7 hints to becoming exceptional at writing Customer Satisfaction Survey

In a survey of nearly 200 senior marketing managers, 71 percent responded that they found customer satisfaction metrics very useful in managing and monitoring their businesses.

Writing survey questions

Tips for writing customer satisfaction surveys

Running a customer satisfaction survey on your website using a tool like Survicate lets you precisely check whether your customer satisfaction level is as high as required. When it comes to writing Customer Satisfaction Survey, well-written customer satisfaction questions are the key to conducting proper measurements. To make your survey even more efficient, we have prepared seven tips to help you write and ask excellent questions.

1. Avoid any assumptions

When it comes to asking about your product it might be difficult to stay neutral. Firstly, because you know a lot more about your product or service than your customer.

Secondly, because you care about your business and do your best to make it as good as possible. If you want your customers to tell the truth, avoid any superlatives and assumptions.

There’s an example of what’s know in survey methodology as leading questions:

Sample wrong question: What do you think about our professional shop assistants?

Sample good question: What do you think about our shop assistants?

2. Don’t ask double-barreled questions

Similarly to the previous example, double-barreled questions are the type where you confuse your respondents. In this case, the source of confusion is you mentioning two separate things, but giving them the option to evaluation only one.

Here’s an example of a double barreled-question and it’s correct form:

Sample wrong question: Please rate on a scale from 1-5: I am satisfied with the location of the office and my salary.

A better question(s): Please rate on a scale from 1-5:  I am satisfied with the location of the office. 
Please rate on a scale from 1-5: I am satisfied with my salary.

As you can see above, unless you have the exact same feelings towards the two matters, it’s impossible to answer.

3. Don’t overuse open-ended questions

Is collecting descriptive text answers your primary feedback collection goal? If so, skip to the next point – otherwise, keep reading for your survey response rate’s sake.

There are many factors that influence customer satisfaction survey response rates, but the most important one is making sure you surveys are straightforward, aren’t suggesting any answers, and – lastly – are very convenient to take.

Many of your respondents will close your survey as soon as they see a text answer field; others might answer one or two questions, but will be exhausted by the time they have to write a custom answer for the third or fourth time.

Unless they’re very close to the subject you ask them about or are forced by circumstances to answer all the questions, they’ll likely drop your questionnaire.

And it’s not just caused by lack of time. Many respondents nowadays are approach with surveys while browsing sites or their emails on their mobile phones and tablets. If it’s all closed-ended questions, they can easily tap a few times on the screen and complete the entire survey.

Conversely, if they must type the answers, they’ll find it too challenging without a regular keyboard.

Another upside of closed-ended questions? Analyzing them is disarmingly simple with a tool like Survicate, whereas deriving insights from descriptive answers takes significantly more time. And this means no automation!

While you’ll have to come up with a fitting closed-ended list of answers yourself, here’s an example:

Sample wrong question:  What is the most important thing you want to achieve through using our website? [Open answer]

Better question: What is the most important thing you want to achieve through using our website?

  • Browse a favorite item category for inspiration
  • Purchase a product in the fastest way possible
  • Read the blog for educational purposes
  • Other [follow-up question with an open answer]

As you can see above, including an “other” option always leave the door open for any off-the-script, open-ended answers your respondents might want to share with you. In time, you can use their “other” answers to expand the list of closed-ended questions.

4. Do not ask about a hypothetical situation

It is always important for your questions to be clear and easy to answer. It might be difficult for people to determine what would they do in a hypothetical situation. Ask only about real situations that actually happened to your customers.

Sample wrong question: What would you do if the product you bought in our shop was incomplete?

Better question: Are you satisfied with the quality of our products?

You may also use think about specifying the targeted audience. Using targeting will make you 100% sure that customer actually knows the answer to your question.

5. Clarity is the key to a customer satisfaction survey

Make sure that a visitor has no problems with reading and understanding your questions. Use clear and comprehensible language. The more struggle participant has with your customer satisfaction survey, the lower is the chance that he will complete it.

Wrong question: Is our website responsive enough for you?

Better question: Is our website easy to use?

6. Ask only necessary questions

Don’t forget to set a clear goal of your survey and do not demand information you don’t really need. The fewer questions you ask, the higher is the chance, that respondents will answer all of them.

7. Use “how” if you need more detailed information

It is tempting to ask only yes/no questions like “Is our company customer friendly?”. Asking “how” and giving scale to choose for respondents provides more detailed information about overall satisfaction.

Sample question: Is our company customer friendly? (yes/no)

Sample better question: How friendly for the customer is our company? (0-10)

If you need some inspiration, here are some of the most common customer satisfaction questions.


It is crucial for any business to track their customers’ satisfaction. According to the American Press Survey, about 78% of consumers bailed on a transaction because of poor service experience. What’s more, it is about 7 times more expensive to acquire new customers than it is to keep a current one.

Make sure you keep an eye out on your customers’ satisfaction levels with all available tools, including our website surveys.

Lastly, you can always use a proven CSAT survey template – take a look at our Free Survey Template Library for more inspiration!

Daniel Korczyński

Technology enthusiast. Passionate about photography and film.

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