In-Store Surveys Let You Influence Corporate Decisions

Posted: 2015.07.15

All too often these days, customers feel their concerns are simply ignored by their favorite restaurants, retailers, sports teams, or other brands. This frustration stems from consumers being increasingly treated like marketing statistics, and that fact is definitely felt during a typical shopping/dining/event experience: there is a general lack of engagement, with people operating with the mindset that if their opinions are ignored, they will in turn ignore that company’s marketing messages.

Companies can make sure that their customers’ thoughts are being heard through in-store surveys. While there are many reasons why these types of surveys can be effective, what consumers may not realize is that they actually do cause corporations to change the way that they do business.

Most people understand that the underlying goal for companies is to satisfy as many customers as possible so as to encourage repeat business and therefore make more money. If they know that their customers are unhappy with something, it is in their best interest to fix it so that they can continue to have those same customers coming back again and again, while simultaneously bringing in new folks interested in trying out the acclaimed service/product.

In-store surveys are more effective at driving repeat business than other types of feedback-gathering. First and foremost, they serve as a starting point for change. They give customers a real voice to business leaders. Customers have the option of telling managers what is right and what is wrong with a certain location, right then and there while it is still fresh in their mind. If they are upset about something, this is the time to tell a manager because the emotions are still raw enough that they can make an impact. If they love something, in-store surveys capture the thoughts so management can leverage the learnings to drive more frequency.

Surveys that ask customers to “call in” or “go online” to take a survey after the fact are not as effective because they don’t occur at the crucial point of experience – customers may have had time to cool off about a bad experience, or forget about the details of a positive experience, so even IF they jump through the hoops of filling out after-the-fact surveys, the feedback is watered down and rarely useful to managers keen on maximizing customer satisfaction.

In fact, when it is all said and done, in-store surveys may be the only contact that a customer has with a manager. That is why it is so important to both give praise and express criticism in-the-moment. If enough customers have the same complaint, there is every reason to believe that managers will do whatever is necessary to correct the problem. Otherwise, they risk losing customers - and that is the last thing that any business wants to do.