Industrial Sales

B2B customer survey: Get into your customer’s mind

The B2B customer survey allows you to get to know your customers more deeply while also fully understanding them.

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What do your customers think of you and your company? Is your service to your customers better or worse than they get from all the other sales professionals calling on them? Do your customers think of you as knowledgeable? Responsive? Is your company perceived as easy to do business with? Is your firm leading edge or out-of-touch? Are your products truly differentiated or nothing better than me-too look-alikes? You may think you know what your customers think of you. But how do you really know? Ask them directly by a B2B customer survey and find out what they think.

B2B customer satisfaction survey
Collecting customer feedback on your products and services enables you to make more informed future decisions, leading in a genuinely customer-centric organization.

B2B Customer survey must be fit for purpose

What form should your B2B customer survey take? You can use just about any medium that transmits words: email or multi-page paper surveys. Here are four vitally essential factors to think through before you send any customer satisfaction survey:

  1. Do the survey no longer than it needs to get the critical information you need. Long, drawn-out surveys intimidate customers. They take one look and think, “forget it.” On the other hand, an email with four specific questions may yield much higher returns than a six-page document, 120-item survey.
  2. Make the form of the survey inviting, easy to complete, and with no hassle. If the survey starts to feel like work, customers will abandon it. Everyone has more important things to do than to give you free advice on how to run your business.
  3. Tell your customer why you want them to take their vital time filling out your survey. We want to provide you with outstanding value and the absolute best possible service tailored to your needs, is far more compelling than, Your satisfaction is important to us.
  4. Use a form of polling that you can efficiently work with when the responses come back. What would happen if nearly all your customers responded? Who is going to mine the data your customers provide you–tabulating and analyzing the responses? Think through the mechanics before you send out your B2B customer surveys.
survey for service satisfaction

Key points of a B2B customer satisfaction survey

Size matters for a B2B customer survey

Consider sending the surveys in small batches. If you are doing this on your own, 25 surveys coming back to you in a week are much easier to handle than 2,500. Small batches also allow you to revise your questions in the B2B customer survey if you sense a problem area to get greater clarification.

It’s all in the timing

When should you poll your customers? That depends on what you want to learn. Asking new customers for their feedback within a couple of weeks of their initial purchase gives you a fresh perspective on what you need to do to keep this customer happy and secure a lifetime of future purchases.

Send your customer surveys in slow periods

Surveying long-time customers for their overall satisfaction can occur almost anytime. Still, you’ll probably find a better return if they receive it during a slower period in their business.

Keep the B2B customer survey simple

A survey does not have to be a complex, sophisticated or expensive undertaking. A survey is nothing more than a device to ask a group of your customers – or prospects – specific questions so that you can gauge their judgments about your products and services.

Where to begin?

Ask yourself a few questions: What do I need to know to get an edge with my customers? Where do I think my firm is vulnerable? How much do my customers really appreciate the value-added extras they’re getting from my company and me?

Where might we be falling short of customer expectations? The more specific your questions in your B2B customer survey, the more specific—and valuable—the answers from your customers.

Customers who aren’t satisfied are planning to switch suppliers—and you should know that already if you are managing your accounts properly. And besides, those customers who say they are satisfied aren’t necessarily loyal. They could happily take their business somewhere else, all the while professing satisfaction with your service.

Importance of customer surveys

Learn how to create an efficient feedback survey that elicits information about how your customers purchase, assists you in determining which services are most beneficial to customers, and provides insight into how your products are perceived by your clients.

Fantastic?
Acceptable?
Disappointing?
Or awful?

Best survey questions for customers

You may integrate a survey on your website or disseminate it virtually anywhere by delivering B2B customer survey questions to your clients via email. You can simply copy and paste a URL to communicate with your B2B clients about the most pressing issues.

Consider the following areas for your B2B clients to evaluate

  • Customer service excellence
  • Your product’s technical features
  • Do they get excellent value for the money they pay you?
  • Your product’s usability
  • Your product’s overall dependability
  • The likelihood of a customer suggesting your goods
  • What your business contributes to the accomplishments of your users. In other words, why do they purchased your product (good or service) in the first place?
  • Additionally, this survey allows you to ask an open-ended question regarding whatever else your consumers wish to convey to you.
analyzing B2B customer survey results

How to rate a B2B customer survey?

Want to really gauge how your customer feels about you? Employ emotionally powerful words in your B2B customer survey. Evoke a feeling from the gut, don’t ask for an analysis from the head.

Example: To the question, “How would you rate your sales representative’s responsiveness to your requests for help?” use this scale:

  • Fantastic
  • Acceptable
  • Disappointing
  • Awful

These kinds of words trigger a very different reaction than sterile words such as; Very Satisfied, Somewhat Satisfied, Somewhat Dissatisfied, Not Satisfied. Finally, don’t give too many choices in your rating scales. A scale with ten or more options doesn’t yield meaningful data.

Give them choices in your feedback surveys

Instead of complex, go for more uncomplicated and more straightforward. For example, give customers just four choices—two positives, two negatives in the B2B customer survey. This forces a customer to declare which side of the line they’re on. Then, add a fifth that allows them to disqualify themselves from rendering an opinion about something that they really shouldn’t: “Have No Basis to Assess,” or, “Not Applicable,” or “Doesn’t Apply to My Experience.”

How to obtain accurate insights?

Ask open-ended questions in your survey

Sometimes the best insights you can get from a B2B customer survey don’t come from the questions with the rating scales. They are the comments that customers write in as they reply to open-ended questions. Such open-ended questions give your customers a chance to tell you things you might not think to ask them.

Response or Survey Overload?

Chances are you’ve seen quite a few customer satisfaction surveys. So, should you forget about surveying your customers? Definitely not! Just the act of asking for your customer’s opinion can get you some positive points on your customers’ caring meter.

Keep sending B2B customer survey

What percentage of your customers to whom you send a survey should you expect to return it to you completely filled-out? The response rate can vary wildly. How many surveys you get back can be influenced by many factors. A response rate in the neighborhood of 33% (one out of three surveys you send come before completed) or more is usually considered excellent.

If you get less than a ten percent response rate, try changing the B2B customer survey or the way you sent it to customers. Keep experimenting; there is no perfect way to survey customers.

customer satisfaction ratings

Conclusion

A B2B customer satisfaction survey is an excellent tool for eliciting responses quickly and effectively. You can quickly identify trending responses, determine areas for improvement, and understand how you can improve your company and products as a strategic partner of your customers. Send your surveys in appropiate periods to observe patterns and the evolution of your clients’ responses over time.