Surveys

Business By Kitagrl Updated 27 May 2009 , 10:01pm by crazycaker

Kitagrl Posted 26 May 2009 , 11:47pm
post #1 of 10

So today I decided to make a survey...so found a neat little online thing you could send surveys where they don't take the customers personal info, etc. I sent it to two recent customers who I had not heard back from yet. I divided up alot of questions, detailing each step of the cake ordering process and then the final...figuring I can improve customer service.

I got one back and then decided maybe surveys aren't the best thing! I mean she emailed and loved the cake, said nothing wrong...and the survey was overall perfect...except two small details I got a 4 out of 5 stars. She did not leave any comments, nor mention anything in her email, so I guess it wasn't anything too major...but it left me wondering! My hub said (and I agree) to just leave it because if it was important, she would have told me what she did not like.

So what do you guys think? Are surveys good for improving service...or are they bad because it encourages customers to hyperanalyze you and they end up being discouraging?

9 replies
costumeczar Posted 26 May 2009 , 11:50pm
post #2 of 10

Unless people are willing to give really specific feedback on the things they don't grade you 5 out of 5 on, I think that surveys are more discouraging than helpful. We're critical enough of ourselves, all it takes is one person to give you a "3" rating in something and not explain it to drive us around the bend!

-Tubbs Posted 27 May 2009 , 4:07pm
post #3 of 10

Graded surveys like that are really unhelpful unless you are going to poll many, many previous customers, so that you can say "98% of customers are Satisfied or Extremely Satisfied with my service". And even then it doesn't tell you why the 2% are Less than Satisfied.

I think a question poll which does not call for yes/no or graded answers would be MUCH more useful:
Direct questions asking what people liked or disliked about flavour, texture, decoration, delivery, ease of ordering & payment, and asking what could be improved. I think this would be less discouraging, because you'd find out what the customer liked as well as areas for improvement.

Kitagrl Posted 27 May 2009 , 4:10pm
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by TubbsCookies

Graded surveys like that are really unhelpful unless you are going to poll many, many previous customers, so that you can say "98% of customers are Satisfied or Extremely Satisfied with my service". And even then it doesn't tell you why the 2% are Less than Satisfied.

I think a question poll which does not call for yes/no or graded answers would be MUCH more useful:
Direct questions asking what people liked or disliked about flavour, texture, decoration, delivery, ease of ordering & payment, and asking what could be improved. I think this would be less discouraging, because you'd find out what the customer liked as well as areas for improvement.




Well, it kind of is like that...it has a five star rating for specific questions, and I included things like cake flavor, texture, design, price, ease, etc. I also left text boxes for additional comments after each question.

LeanneW Posted 27 May 2009 , 4:43pm
post #5 of 10

I've been thinking of a survey too b/c it would allow an anonymous way for customers to be really honest. The reason I haven't done it is b/c I am already so critical of myself I would probably quit making cakes if someone said they were unhappy. I put so much pressure on myself knowing this is their big day and I would hate to feel that I had let them down.

So for now I go with the "no news is good news" theory

LittleLadyBabyCakes Posted 27 May 2009 , 4:47pm
post #6 of 10

Maybe you should look at it sort of like grades... 1 star is failing, 2 stars below average, 3 stars avaerage, 4 stars above average, and 5 stars outstanding.

That always helped me with my "C's"...So, I am just average in that area...no biggie icon_smile.gif

Of course, this is coming from and eternal optimist icon_smile.gif

Kitagrl Posted 27 May 2009 , 4:52pm
post #7 of 10

I guess I'm wondering if asking specific questions could actually encourage a customer to analyze something they wouldn't have already?

For instance, if they were happy with their cake....but then they had to answer a question as to how exact was it according to what we discussed...could it encourage them to actually start analyzing something they were originally fine with? Could it actually encourage negativity?

-Tubbs Posted 27 May 2009 , 5:27pm
post #8 of 10

Yes, I tend to agree with you on that last point. The last thing you want is a customer who was previously really happy with their cake start saying "Well, now you mention it, maybe it was a little xxx", where xxx = dry, not level, colour not 100% right, whatever...

How about running small focus groups instead? You could invite close friends and family and make it clear you want really honest, constructive answers.

indydebi Posted 27 May 2009 , 6:37pm
post #9 of 10

First, I hate "on a scale of 1 to 5....." surveys. They are usually canned questions, too generic and won't ALLOW me to tell you what I really think, good or bad.

A long time ago, I learned you only need 3 questions on a survey to tell you what you REALLY need to know (sorry, but it has the dreaded 1-5 scale on it!):
1) I would rate this (cake, event, whatever) 1 to 5.

2) I would have rated it lower except ___________________.

3) I would have rated it higher if ______________________.

#2 tells you what is good about it. #3 tells you what could be improved. It also forces and ALLOWS the person filling it out to actually TELL you what they liked/didn't like.

And if you want to add a 4th one, the ever telling "I would/wouldn't refer my family/friends to you because __________________.

Surveys are useless unless they tell you something.

crazycaker Posted 27 May 2009 , 10:01pm
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

Surveys are useless unless they tell you something.




I agree. One way to phrase a short and helpful survey (which also comes across as both humble and sincere):

"We want your cake experience to be the best ever. Help us improve by giving us a brief reply.... (answer only what applies)

How could we improve:
delivery: ______________
flavor selection:__________________
taste: ________________
design options: ________________

Or -- if you think we are on the right track -- let us know!"



Maybe sign your name on the survey to show the personal aspect. People dislike those impersonal punch-card type things, but are happy to connect with a "human."

Good luck!

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