CX surveys are the butt of jokes in dinner party conversations and comedy sketches. On social media, people gleefully tweet examples of surveys gone wrong. Just type the three words “CX,” “survey,” and “fail” into a Twitter search . . .
But this is no laughing matter if you are in a CX role. Bad CX surveys create bad data and bad respondent experiences. That’s why I recommend this new CX survey checklist.

What Does The Survey Checklist Include?

The checklist has 30 criteria in five categories: purpose & relevance, clarity, flow & control, feedback types, and appearance & consistency. Each criterion includes the question you should ask and a best-practice example.
We developed the criteria based on best practices for good survey design. Good surveys are easy and enjoyable to complete, let customers share what they want to share, and collect meaningful data to track CX quality.

Survey checklist has 30 criteria in 5 categories: Purpose & Relevance, Clarity, Flow & control, Feedback types, Appearance & consistency
The survey checklist has 30 criteria in five categories

How Should You Use The Checklist To Assess Survey Quality?

If you are designing a new survey, use the checklist on your survey draft, then program the survey and use the checklist again on the version of the survey your customers will see (e.g., mobile or online). You’ll notice issues, such as missing transitions, that you won’t notice in a draft document. For existing surveys, skip the survey draft check.
As you check, count your “no” answers. If you see more than five “no’s” across categories or more than two “no’s” per category, we recommend that you improve the survey.

Design your survey, then use the checklist for the draft, the programmed version and for the pre-test with customers. Only when it passes all three check points, field it
Use the checklist for the draft, the programmed version, and for the pre-test with customers

Where Should You Start?

Make sure each new survey goes through the process, but also check your existing surveys. Start with those that meet more of the following conditions: They measure a moment of truth, go out to many customers, aren’t effective (e.g., the data collected is hard to interpret), or create bad respondent experiences (e.g., customers have complained about the survey).

Should You Involve Customers In Survey Quality Checks, And How?

Yes! Keep your checklist handy, and ask a few customers to fill out the survey and to say what they think as they do. That lets you confirm whether customers agree with your yes/no answers: Do customers understand a question? Do they interpret questions as you had intended?
If it’s too hard to get customers involved, use colleagues (it’s best if they are from outside the CX team). If the survey is about an experience that plenty of people have had (e.g., booking a flight on a plane), use friends and family as guinea pigs.
For more details, check out the new report, “Design Better CX Surveys With This Checklist.”