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Best Practices for Designing Customer Satisfaction Surveys


The hardest part of creating a customer satisfaction survey is not getting your customers to take the survey. Many customers would be willing to attempt any survey you present in front of them. However, whether they’ll complete the survey or leave it midway is something you can’t be sure of.

Unless of course, you do the most crucial part of creating the survey really well. The hardest part is how to design a customer satisfaction survey that holds the readers’ attention long enough for them to think it’s worth their time to complete it.

This blog attempts to answer the following questions surrounding a customer satisfaction survey:

What Is a Customer Satisfaction Survey?

Customer satisfaction surveys are a measure of how well your products/services are received by your customers. These surveys help you identify answers to the questions like – Are they happy with your product or they are expecting a little more from it? Did they face any challenges while reaching out to the customer support team? Were you able to address their queries and so on?

What is the Importance of Customer Satisfaction Surveys?

The large business market thrives on competition. Your customers have access to numerous products, but how do you ensure that they continue their association with you? It depends on how happy they are with your products. Customer feedback is one of the most crucial factors to measure customer satisfaction with any product or experience. But customers don’t always share their opinion unless you ask them. The solution: Customer Satisfaction Surveys!

A customer survey is the means to get the first-hand opinion of your customers.

Further, a customer satisfaction survey has benefits like:

  • Improve Product Performance: It helps you improve and fine-tune your products at the early stages by listening from the customers about their expectations.
  • Enhanced Word of Mouth Marketing: When your customers are happy with your brand, they will refer it to their friends and family. According to Review42 research, 83% of US online shoppers are influenced by friends’ social media posts on product purchases. With referral marketing in place, you acquire new customers with no additional business costs.
  • Increased customer retention: These surveys help you keep the customers happy by understanding their concerns via feedback received from the surveys and resolving them. When your existing customers are happy, they continue to trust your brand and stick around with it. And these customers go on to become brand loyalists.

Now, let’s move on to the next section. Here are 11 tips and tricks to create a customer satisfaction survey. Keep reading!

11 Tips to Create Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Watch: How to Create a Customer Satisfaction Survey

Designing a customer satisfaction survey requires a mix of close-ended questions, short questions, unbiased questions and so on. Let’s dig deeper into customer satisfaction survey best practices.

1. Ask Customers for Their Overall Rating First

The reasoning behind this is really simple if you think about it. As a customer, you may like a brand or product a lot, but there may be a few tiny things that you find irksome. Asking your customers about those tiny things before you ask for the final rating, can influence their overall rating in the end. The finer details then tell you where to improve in a clear and concise fashion.

2. Keep Your Surveys Short and Crisp

Shorter surveys always have a higher response rate. That’s because if people feel they can get their point across in a short time, they will. Further, imagine sorting through hundreds of 20-30 question surveys to extract the information you need. It’s just not feasible for both the customer and the surveyor; so keep your surveys as short and concise as you can. Look up sample customer satisfaction survey questions examples to get an idea of how short your survey questions are supposed to be.

3. Define Your Survey Goal

The trick to creating effective customer survey questions is to be sure of your ultimate goal. Keep your goals clear and attainable; it will not only help you create better customer satisfaction survey questions but will also give your customers a better picture of the insight they provide.

For example, imagine you have released a new product feature. You want to know its performance from your customers. You send out a survey, asking for their feedback. Herein, the goal of your survey is to collect customer feedback to understand their satisfaction on using the new product feature. With the customer feedback, you can gauge the pros and cons of using your product.

4. Keep the Personal Questions Towards the End of the Survey

Keep in mind that your surveys are a conversation between you and your customers. Treat your online surveys the same way you would treat a customer standing right in front of. Keep personal questions towards the end since most people refrain from sharing personal information right at the start. Starting your surveys with them could dissuade them from completing the survey. Further, avoid questions about income, family members and other such questions when collecting demographic information.

5. Don’t Ask Multiple Questions in One

Don’t ask respondents to answer multiple questions in one. An example of this would be “How would you rate the quality of our product and our customer support?”. While the customer may be incredibly fond of your product, they may not be happy with your support. Asking such questions will not give you enough credible data to improve your customer service or the product.

6. Review Your Survey Before You Send It

Before you send your survey out to your customers, make sure to review it thoroughly and send it to your colleagues for in-house tests. It’s always good to have a second pair of eyes take a look because it’s only human to miss things. Having it tested around will not only help you find any grammatical errors but also gives you an idea of the question logic and working of the survey.

7. Add Incentives for Survey Completion

Everybody likes receiving gifts and discounts. Incentivize the surveys with special deals and offers to get a better response rate from customers. Adding incentives can give a boost to survey engagement & improve survey response rate.

8. Don’t Bother Non-Responders

Nothing bothers anyone more than repeatedly being told to do something they don’t want to. If a customer doesn’t partake in the survey, send them one reminder. If they still don’t take the survey, let them be. Do not send them constant reminders to complete the survey. That will only end up building a negative image of your brand.

9. Send a Prompt Response When You Receive Negative Reviews

When given a particularly negative response to your survey, respond to that customer as soon as possible. Don’t just wait for all responses to come in, sift through all the responses to find the negative ones and then send an individual, separate message for each negative review. A personal touch in your apology emails will do wonders if you give it a shot.

10. Add a Thank You Note at the End

A thank you note for those who complete your survey is a simple gesture that can help build trust. Ideally, prefer personalized notes rather than automated texts through a service. Most customer satisfaction survey examples will come with texts at the end you can refer to. But a personal thank you note at the end will serve your purpose better.

11. Send Repeated Surveys and Study Results over Time

Sending out surveys and studying their results over time can help you in more ways than one. It gives you an idea of how the respondents feel about the surveys, many times changing a word or introduction to the survey can have a significant impact on the response rate and behavior of survey takers. Study the results and keep improving your surveys over time for better results.

Now that you have understood how to design a customer satisfaction survey, let’s understand how to effectively frame the survey questions.

Customer Satisfaction Survey Questions

It is important to frame the right questions to know your customer’s genuine feedback. Make sure that you have a balanced mix of open-ended and closed-ended questions in your survey.

Broadly speaking, customer satisfaction survey questions fall in the following categories:

1. Product Related Questions:

These questions are specific to product usage.


  • Are you satisfied with our product?
  • Is it easy to understand and use our products?
  • What is your feature of our product?
  • Would you like to see any new features in the product?

2. Service-Related Questions:

It refers to the service of the company like customer support.


  • Are you satisfied with the support of the customer service team?
  • Was your issue resolved in time?
  • What is your greatest fear while trying to approach our customer service team?

3. General Questions:

This pertains to the organizational questions as a whole.


  • Are you happy to be associated with us?
  • Do you have any concern before starting a free trial with us?

4. Open-Ended Questions:

These questions collect additional feedback from the customers.


  • Do you have any other questions or feedback for us?
  • Overall, what is your take on our customer support?

5. Referral Marketing Type Questions:

These questions help in understanding the probability of word of mouth marketing.


  • How likely will you recommend us to your friends or colleagues?

Customer Satisfaction Survey Templates

You can always refer to customer satisfaction survey templates, to understand the popular practices. Customer satisfaction survey samples can be found on the internet or from online survey maker tools. But, it is always best to design your own surveys as you can tailor them specifically to your requirements.

At ProProfs, we have tailored customer satisfaction surveys that suits your needs. You have a variety to choose from: NPS survey, level rating survey, polled survey, questionnaires etc.

Check the Templates Here: Customer Survey templates

Leverage Customer Surveys to Grow Your Business

Customer satisfaction surveys are a pragmatic way to stay ahead in the crowded business world. These surveys help you ensure that your customers feel cared for and valued at every stage of the business life cycle. They give you a clear picture on how to design a customer satisfaction survey

Use customer surveys to innovate your product, reduce marketing costs, and build a robust growth plan for the future.

Just remember this formula,

Customer Satisfaction Surveys.

What are you waiting for? Get started with your first customer satisfaction survey with ProProfs Survey Maker. We have easily customizable templates to start off with!

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We have the #1 Online Survey Maker Software to get actionable user insights.

About the author

Emma David is a seasoned market research professional with 8+ years of experience. Having kick-started her journey in research, she has developed rich expertise in employee engagement, survey creation and administration, and data management. Emma believes in the power of data to shape business performance positively. She continues to help brands and businesses make strategic decisions and improve their market standing through her understanding of research methodologies.