Do’s and Don’ts of Grocers’ Feedback Surveys

Georgina Nelson
CEO and founder
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Are you keeping an eye on customer feedback? If it’s been an afterthought before, maybe it’s time to start taking it seriously.

Nearly 95 percent of business executives agree: Listening to customer feedback is increasingly critical to the bottom line. Rather than devoting valuable resources toward survey methods that may fall short on delivering actionable insights, take a few moments to consider what’s working and what’s not when it comes to gauging the opinions of your customer base.

Here are some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when attempting to gather feedback about your customers’ shopping experiences:

DON’T offer time-consuming surveys

When it comes to the grocery shopping experience, shorter is often better. With only 82 minutes of free time each day, shoppers aren’t usually willing to spend precious minutes filling out surveys — especially if there’s nothing in it for them.

Although much is made of the potential insights that could be generated by lengthy online or in-store surveys, these methods often fall short of expectations. In many cases, the responses to these surveys are less accurate because customers complete them simply for the incentive, without any regard for providing genuine feedback.

Almost seven out of 10 customers believe in-store surveys are inconvenient. Respondents complained that many surveys were either excessively long or contained leading questions. Make sure that you’re valuing the time of your customers by opting for surveys that are both simple and straightforward.

DO realize that less is more

While it may be tempting to ask multiple questions about a shopper’s experience in your store, one can get the job done. In fact, research from TruRating shows that a one-question survey at checkout can produce up to an 88 percent in-store response rate. By asking shoppers to answer one question instead of five or six, you can boost your chances of receiving a response.

Make sure that you’re valuing the time of your customers by opting for surveys that are both simple and straightforward.

However, using a one-question survey doesn’t mean you have to lose out on the insights gained by asking the number of questions you would in a longer survey. Instead, automatically rotate through a variety of questions that address different aspects of your grocery business, such as pricing, customer service and in-store experience. With the power of higher survey response rates, you can begin collecting valuable data on a real-time basis and quickly start to drive smarter decision-making for your store.

DON’T underestimate the value of the point of sale

Asking a single survey question to your customers right at the checkout can pave the way for more genuine, timely feedback. Using the point of sale as the place to gather customer feedback not only provides a convenient experience for customers, but it also helps ensure that the insights they provide are accurate.

With other survey options, such as using a receipt to prompt customers to complete an online survey, there’s a chance that the information you’ll receive won’t be as useful. That’s because even if a customer does complete the survey, he or she may do so long after the shopping experience has concluded. Hours, days or even weeks may pass before shoppers get around to a feedback survey. If customers can’t remember what they were thinking at the time of purchase, their responses won’t reflect reality.

DO keep it simple

Once you ensure that customers don’t have to go out of their way to offer feedback, make things even easier by trading in open-ended questions, or those that ask for elaboration, for multiple-choice questions. Although one open-ended question may not seem like much, thoughtfully expanding upon a specific topic could take some time. Speed up the survey process with multiple-choice questions that enable customers to give their two cents in mere seconds.

Want another way to satisfy consumers’ need for speed? Try introducing a numerical rating system. By choosing between zero and nine on a keypad, customers can share their feedback with just the touch of a button.

Feedback often serves as the focal point of a grocer’s customer service strategy, and customers’ insights can go a long way toward enhancing the shopping experience. But while there’s no denying the importance of customer feedback, figuring out how to collect it isn’t always as simple. From in-store to receipt surveys, it’s tough to accommodate the fast-paced lifestyles of today’s consumers. These largely ineffective strategies may leave grocers without the feedback needed to make necessary improvements.

Meet the needs of busy shoppers by ensuring that your feedback survey is short and sweet. Limiting each survey to just one question will boost response rates and bring a new level of convenience to the experience.

About the Author

Georgina Nelson is the CEO and founder of TruRating, a customer feedback solution. Based in the United Kingdom, TruRating has operations across Australia, Canada and the United States. Read More