Surveys are great tools to learn about your target audience and where you can improve as a business. However, if you don’t collect the right information or know how to interpret the important results, the survey will be of no value to you. In order to get the most out of your surveys, you need to identify the valuable information and use it to grow your business. Here are some great tips to use when analyzing survey data, ensuring you achieve the most out of your efforts.
Craft Strategic Questions
Not all questions will give you information you can really use to improve. Before even writing your survey, you need to determine a clear goal. All questions should be crafted to help pull information that is relevant to that goal.
- Don’t ask questions because you are curious
- Ensure your questions are unbiased
- Consider your question order and type
- Simplify, condense and combine your questions whenever possible
- Consider possible interpretations and try to be as clear and straightforward as possible
- Keep your survey as short as possible
- Allow users to leave additional details at the very end to provide any extra information
Make your surveys as clear and easy as possible. You want to speak directly to your audience and focus only on information that is necessary and important to your business so that you get valuable data. Beginning with creating strategic questions will help you analyze and filter the data you receive into actionable information.
Create Visual Data Reports
Repeated key phrases, patterns in responses and surprising results may be the first important items of information to consider when analyzing survey data. A visual representation of the data in the form of a chart or graph can help you identify how the responses are measuring against one another. The brain processes visuals 60,000 times faster than text, so creating those graphics can help speed your process and pin-point data you might not see by simply taking a look at the results.
Pinpoint and Filter When Analyzing Survey Data
You will want to start narrowing your data down and reading it according to the additional information you might have about your survey participants, while considering the fact that not every customer is taking your survey. So, don’t take the survey as the final authority, but use it to compare to other data you’ve already collected. If users say they like a certain kind of product the most, but a different product is more frequently purchased and shared socially, then you know you may not have a complete representation of your audience.
Pinpoint the responses that answer the questions you identified in the beginning as being important to your business. Try to answer the big questions you had that would improve your business and focus on being detailed in what answers you were able to glean. You want to keep your goals at the forefront of your mind so that you can use your survey data to help you take the next steps towards growth.
Establish S.M.A.R.T. Goals
Analyzing survey data gives you a great launching point to establish new goals for the future. Don’t invest your time and energy in a survey without forming a plan of action. S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely) goals are important for creating real change driven by data.
Specific: You asked a pointed question and now have the answers from your audience. Be specific in how you are going to respond to that information and improve your business. If respondents told you they wanted more in the newsletter, determine how many articles, product highlights and graphics you are going to include each month.
Measurable: Ensure you have a way to determine if your effort resulted in a success or failure. Initially, if you are specific in your response plan, you can measure whether or not you actually were successful in attempting what you planned. For example, conducting another survey or taking a look at the right metrics can help you measure if that effort succeeded in improving your relationship with your audience.
Attainable – Choose to set goals for areas of your business you can control. You don’t want to have a goal that isn’t even attainable on your end. For example, you can’t plan to grow by creating a viral post if you aren’t able to control the post going viral in the first place.
Realistic – Be realistic in your goals and what you can accomplish as a business in your given timeframe. If you’ve never had any success in an area, don’t expect things to be dramatically different on the first try or overload your staff with work they can’t handle.
Timely – Plan a deadline in which you can reevaluate your goal, and determine whether it was a success or failure – as it may potentially need tweaking. You can also establish checkpoints where you evaluate your progress and efforts as you go, ensuring your success is more likely by the time your deadline arrives.
Surveys can help you create business goals and measure success. Use surveys to continually improve your efforts which in turn increases customer satisfaction as you provide a product or service of value to your audience.