Create a Customer Relationship Survey in 5 Easy Steps

CRS chart orange.jpgLong-distance relationships. They can be stressful and exhausting, yet when managed correctly they can build unbreakable trust and strength. As a business owner running an app, you have to maintain hundreds, if not thousands of long-distance relationships every day. You may have customers halfway across the globe, and it would be impossible to personally reach out to each and every one of them. Luckily for you, you can reach out to all of them through an in-app customer relationship survey. It’s short and sweet, yet it can yield incredibly powerful results that can keep you from getting the “it’s not you, it’s me” from your customers.


So What is a Customer Relationship Survey?

In the broadest sense, a customer relationship survey seeks to understand how satisfied customers are with your business. One of the most widely used survey types is the Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey. An in-app NPS empowers organizations to identify users who would be willing to recommend their app to a friend. The ultimate goal is to retarget these users through in-app messages and encourage them to rate you in the App Store (thus boosting the higher ratings). Because you’re executing these surveys in-app, you already have the user’s attention, and are likely to receive relevant, useful feedback that is top-of-mind. Using the lessons from past successful in-app customer relationship and NPS campaigns on your next survey, you can interact with your customers to create an experience that keeps them coming back.


Step 1: Segment Your Users

One of the biggest mistakes we’ve seen in online marketing is when a company treats all of its customers as one giant customer. Similarly, not all of your app users are the same. Using segments, you can create targeted groups based on demographics and behavior. This allows you to develop a more defined survey approach for each of your markets.

Some sample user segments:

  • Users who are paid subscribers in your media app
  • Female users who have purchased at least one dress in the past 30 days
  • Users who added an item to the cart but didn’t complete checkout
  • Users who viewed the “Running Shoes” category but have never made a purchase

Exploring segments Localytics


Step 2: Identify The Key Questions and Optimal Format

Before you draft your questions, it’s important to understand a few key concepts:

  • App users typically have a shorter attention span than website visitors
  • Spelling out the user expectations before they begin the survey can work wonders for user response
  • Having a clear understanding of average screens viewed per session and average session length can be a great guide for structuring your survey

If you can’t decide on which questions to ask, the NPS survey is a great place to start. First, ask them how likely they are, 1-10, to recommend your app to someone else. If they answer anywhere between a 8-10, encourage them to rate and review your app in the app store. If they respond with a 1-7, ask for their feedback through a free-form question. This is a great opportunity to address user issues before they escalate to a very visible review in the app store.

NPS surveys can elicit crucial feedback about your app in the big picture. But there are plenty of times you’d want to address particular app features or elements. For example, you may want to measure first impressions of a new layout, an updated photo uploader or an improved search algorithm. You can accomplish this by firing targeted surveys to users after they complete a particular event.

Some sample questions:

  • Your fancy new kicks are on their way! We’d love to hear your feedback on the checkout process. Got a sec?
  • We thought this article was worth sharing with friends too! Could you take a moment to rate this new social share feature?
  • Now that you’ve had a chance to listen to a few songs, how would you rate the quality of the sound?


Step 3: Build the Campaign (Creative, Technique, Timing)


Let’s be honest, surveys are not at the top of users’ minds when they interact with your app. If you really want to get some responses you have to make it easy and fun(...ish) to complete. Don’t be afraid to let your company’s persona shine through the copy. You don’t have to be a young start-up to add some creative messaging or branding to your surveys.


You also have to decide whether or not you will execute your campaign through in-app or push messaging. Since the survey will be completed in the app, we typically recommend the in-app messaging for this one. However, if you want to grab the attention of some inactive users, you could send a push message to notify the user of a new app version, and set an automated in-app survey to fire a few days later.


Determining when to actually send the survey is entirely up to you. But no one wants to open an app for the first time and immediately get a survey - let them interact with your app before asking about their experiences. One popular technique is to trigger the survey after the user completes a specific event (changes settings, completes purchase, views a certain number of screens, etc). This then allows you to gauge user experience on particular components of the app, not just the app as a whole.


Step 4: Split-Test Your Messaging

The feedback you receive from your users is incredibly valuable. To make this information even more powerful, you should constantly strive to improve your completion rate. The more responses you receive, the more representative it is of your entire user base, and the better off you are when making changes based on that feedback.

One of the best ways to accomplish this is to A/B test your in-app messages. Some users respond better if they feel they’re not forced to complete the survey. Others may respond better to a more aesthetically pleasing design. You won’t know which works better with your audience until you test both side-by-side.

swaag-app AB test

Other components you could split-test are calls-to-action, submission button copy, or even colors of the message box. You may be surprised to see the difference in response between one color and another!


Step 5: Interpret Your Analytics (Correctly)

One of the simplest metrics to measure is completion rate over time. If you are split-testing and improving your creative throughout the campaign, you should start to see your survey completion rate improve. If not, it may be time to rethink the execution of the campaign.

If you have ever conducted website surveys, you can also compare the completion rate of the website to that of your app. This will give you a great idea of which channel users/visitors are more likely to use to provide feedback. If you’re seeing better engagement on your website, dig a little deeper into your app and revisit the creative, survey length and screenflow.

You might also want to know if the survey felt intrusive to the user. When you target a particular segment, you can measure your most important KPIs before and after the campaign was launched. This will give you a good idea as to whether or not your users were turned off by the survey.

Lastly, once you identify areas for app improvement and you make those changes, you should measure your KPIs before and after the new version is released. Hopefully you will see metrics like session length, session interval and loyal users start to improve.


Without Action, it’s Just Information

When conducting your customer relationship surveys, remember that it is more than just a means of collecting information. The survey is an excellent opportunity to engage with your users. If you harness their feedback to make strategic changes within your app, they will recognize that you value their opinions (and people love to be heard!).

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