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Voice of The Customer Surveys: Questions, Examples & Types

Jul 11, 2024 | 9 minute read

Voice of The Customer Surveys: Questions, Examples & Types

Megan Wenzl

Content Marketing Manager

Quick Takeaways

Voice of the Customer (VoC) surveys gather feedback on customer loyalty, satisfaction, service, and overall experience. Five main types help brands improve experiences, personalize marketing, and refine product offerings. When using these surveys, brands should keep them concise, personalize invitations, and promptly act on feedback.

Marketing teams and brands often scour data, analyze sales reports, and host think tanks, all-hands meetings, and strategy calls to answer one question—what do customers really want? Ironically, the simplest way to get an answer to this question is just to ask the customer. 

What is a Voice of the Customer (VoC) Survey?

The primary objective of a VoC survey is to gather feedback from customers about brand loyalty, product satisfaction, customer service, brand image and reputation, and even their comprehensive shopping journey. Brands can use these insights to make improvements, personalize the experience, hone marketing efforts, and adjust product offerings. 

Why Create Voice of Customer Surveys?

VoC surveys are useful for brands because they provide valuable insights into the customer’s needs, preferences, mindsets, and overall impression of the brand. They are flexible tools that can be adjusted based on the brand’s objectives.

Customer feedback (through multiple-choice or open-ended responses) helps brands prioritize the most important actions to create an engaging and frictionless ecommerce customer experience. They also help brands isolate pain points throughout the customer journey and concentrate efforts where they are most needed, whether on product assortment, UX, customer service, or post-purchase experience.

5 Different Types of VoC Surveys

Voice of customer surveys can take many forms, depending on your brand’s specific objectives and desired insights. The following five are some of the most common: 

Different types of voice of the customer surveys

Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) Surveys

A customer satisfaction survey is a straightforward survey measuring the customer’s satisfaction level with your brand. They can apply to individual transactions or to their experience spanning all interactions with the brand. Think of it as a business health vitals check—it will tell you if something is wrong but not dive too deep into specifics. The next step after these surveys is to analyze the root cause of positive or negative results.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) Surveys

A traditional net promoter survey is typically just one question, like: “On a scale of 1-10, how likely are you to recommend our brand to a friend?” They have a high customer response rate and provide valuable data about customers’ level of loyalty. With these results, brands can measure whether customers are brand promoters (9-10), passives (7-8), or detractors (0-6).

Customer Effort Score (CES) Surveys

A customer effort score survey tells how much a customer needs to work to make a purchase or interact with the brand. It asks questions along the lines of, “How easy was it for you to find what you were looking for today?” or, “Was your issue resolved?” They help identify customer friction points. 

Customer Loyalty Surveys

In addition to an NPS question, customer loyalty surveys ask what would prompt a customer to make another purchase with the brand or how likely they are to continue purchasing. They are useful for discovering more about customer loyalty behaviors. 

Product-Specific Surveys

Product-specific surveys isolate customers’ viewpoints on the product allowing brands to improve product offering and assortment. They also tell brands if poor results in other VoC surveys are caused by product quality rather than more easily fixed elements of the shopping journey.

How to Create Effective VoC Surveys

Creating VoC surveys is just as important as employing them. We recommend following these five steps and approaching each with intentionality. 

Step 1: Brainstorm and Define Objectives

  • Consider your objective (determine loyalty levels, discover why customers are detracting, improve customer service, etc.)
  • If multiple objectives exist, determine which is the priority.
  • Consider the survey’s response goals. Does your objective require many responses or smaller, higher-quality responses?
  • Brainstorm which questions would adequately help your brand meet its objectives.

Step 2: Determine Your Survey Type

  • Select the appropriate survey type for your brand’s goals.
  • Adjust the length and complexity to reflect your response rate goals. Okendo recommends utilizing micro surveys—these include 1-3 questions, requiring less of the customer therefore giving them a positive experience.
  • Determine whether your goals require multiple types of surveys to draw conclusions.

Step 3: Craft Simple, Clear, and Unbiased Questions

  • Cut down on unnecessary phrasing or overly specific questions.
  • Be wary of asking leading questions that might elicit a specific response (Ask “On a scale of 1-10, did you enjoy your experience today?” instead of “What did you enjoy about your experience today?”)
  • Ensure the questions and answers (for multiple choice questions) are simple and consider all possible responses without bias.

Step 4: Choose the Right Channels for Distribution

  • Choose distribution channels that would align with your goals (customer service surveys can be used during post-checkout whereas brand loyalty surveys could be distributed through email to previous purchasers).
  • Select multiple channels for distribution to enhance accuracy of results and response rate.

Survey distribution channels

Step 5: Collect and Review Responses

  • Deploy the VoC survey for a preset time and collect responses.
  • Avoid evaluating results before the end of the collection period to avoid confirmation bias.
  • Review responses with multiple team members to capture varied perspectives and interpretations.
  • Create a summary of findings, draw conclusions, and create action points for improvement.

Great Voice of Customer Survey Question Examples

If you are ready to create voice of customer survey questions for your brand, consider these examples. Whether your goal is to gauge customer satisfaction, understand brand loyalty, or gather in-depth feedback, these questions can serve as a useful starting point. 

Value or Results-Based Questions

Value or results-based questions aim to understand the perceived value and effectiveness of your products or services. They identify what customers appreciate most and what drives their purchasing decisions.

  • How would you rate the value of our product or service?
  • What makes you purchase products from our brand?
  • What was your favorite part of your shopping experience today?
  • Does our product or service fulfill your needs?

Brand Loyalty or Brand Perception Questions

Brand loyalty or brand perception questions assess customers’ commitment to your brand and their perception of it in the market. They can reveal how likely customers are to return or recommend your brand to others.

  • How likely are you to recommend our brand to a friend or family member?
  • How likely are you to return and make a purchase in the future?
  • Have you heard of our brand before?
  • How likely are you to choose our brand over another brand?

Customer Satisfaction Questions

Customer satisfaction questions focus on the overall satisfaction level of customers with their experience. They help identify areas of improvement in your services or products.

  • On a scale of 1-10, how satisfied are you with your experience today?
  • Was our customer service team able to resolve your issue?
  • What can we do to improve your shopping experience?
  • How would you rate your shopping experience with us?

Open-Ended Questions for In-Depth Feedback

Open-ended questions provide customers with the opportunity to give detailed feedback that will reveal their thoughts about your brand. These questions can uncover specific areas for improvement and innovation.

  • If you could change one thing about our product what would it be?
  • What would prompt you to return for another purchase?
  • How can we improve your shopping experience?
  • What would make you stop purchasing from our brand?

Best Practices for Voice of the Customer Surveys

  • Keeping surveys short and focused: Brevity is key for optimizing response rates and focusing on your brand’s objectives.
  • Personalizing survey invitations: Ensure the survey request is personalized to the recipient and the distribution channels.
  • Following up on responses: Communicate your appreciation of customers filling out a survey. Follow up with the customer to communicate which actions have been taken and what has been improved.
  • Ensuring anonymity and confidentiality: To build trust, communicate that responses are anonymous and confidential. Implement security measures to ensure customer information remains private.
  • Analyzing and acting on feedback promptly: Otherwise, survey responses become a good-to-know rather than a tool for improvement and focused efforts.

How to Put Your VoC Survey Data to Good Use

1. Analyzing survey data

First, analyze the survey data with a team of unbiased members from relevant departments. This should be a combined effort between public relations, marketing, CRM, and customer service teams to include multiple perspectives and ensure adequate distribution of valuable customer feedback.

NPS voice of the customer survey

2. Sharing insights with relevant teams

Next, ensure that results and insights are shared with relevant teams. For example, a product-specific survey provides valuable information for the design, sourcing, product development, customer service, and copywriting teams.

David Visser, COO of Zyber highlights more on sharing data is important, “Survey data is incredibly powerful in enabling all teams across the business to succeed. It can inform purchasing teams on what products customers are looking for, customer service teams on NPS/CSAT, as well as richer profiles to look at while supporting a customer, and marketing teams on customer-led attribution data.”

3. Implementing changes based on feedback

Without making improvements, adjusting marketing efforts, or enhancing the shopping experience, the results of surveys are rendered useless. Brands can best put VoC survey results to use by actioning the key insights and focusing on what changes would have the biggest impact on the customer experience.

4. Measuring the impact of changes

Measuring impact helps get cross-functional team members on board with strategies, rationalizes deploying additional surveys for the future, and helps fine-tune or provide direction on efforts made for improvement.

Create Powerful VoC Surveys with Okendo

With Okendo Surveys, your brand can create personalized, intuitive surveys, distribute through multiple channels, gather customer feedback, and analyze results in an easy-to-use dashboard. Book a demo call with our team to discover how we can help your brand improve the customer experience and create brand loyalty.

Final Thoughts

VoC surveys allow brands to hear customer feedback in their own words. While traditional data analysis, brainstorming sessions, and sales reports can still give valuable insights into the customer’s preferences, often the simplest way to serve the customer is to ask directly what they want, their satisfaction levels, or how they feel about the brand overall.

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