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10 Most Common Customer Satisfaction Survey Mistakes to Avoid

Common CSAT Survey Mistakes to Avoid

A strategy that most businesses use to engage with their clients is customer satisfaction (CSAT) surveys. These surveys provide a way to collect client opinions in regard to the customer service experience and the company’s products or services. For this reason, it is important to draft a CSAT survey that will provide the best insights for your company’s success.

In this blog, you will learn the purpose of conducting CSAT surveys and the common mistakes made when creating them. By writing high-quality CSAT surveys, you get the most insight into precisely what your clients think of your brands and gauge their average level of satisfaction.

Reasons for carrying out CSAT surveys

Businesses conduct customer satisfaction surveys to assess the level of satisfaction of their clients. They also want to know their customers’ experiences and what clients think of the company’s brands or services. CSAT surveys can help in the analysis of the level of satisfaction and discover areas that the business needs to improve. This will, in turn, ensure the continued growth of the company and improve customer experiences.

For the best results, it is key to avoid making mistakes while creating CSAT surveys.

General customer satisfaction survey mistakes to avoid

Mistakes in CSAT surveys prevent businesses from getting accurate and relevant feedback from their clients. The main customer satisfaction survey mistakes that businesses make include:

1. Using biased questions

Customers should have the freedom to provide honest feedback. Asking biased questions that restrict to certain answers denies clients that chance. Sometimes, you might write CSAT survey questions in a way that gives clients limited choices on the answers to give. These questions intentionally push or lead clients to respond with specific answers that the managers want to receive. This strips the clients of the choice to respond genuinely to their liking. As a result, the CSAT survey reports generated based on that feedback will be unreliable and inaccurate. Therefore, companies should avoid biased and misleading questions to generate the best CSAT survey reports.

2. Forcing customers to participate in surveys

Sending too many survey reminders within a short period can be nagging to clients. It will leave them irritated and frustrated with your surveys. As a result, they will likely opt out of business with your company and switch to your competitors.

For this reason, it is ideal to send CSAT surveys only when necessary. Avoid sending many surveys at once or after short intervals, such as daily.

3. The goal or purpose of the CSAT survey is not defined

Another customer satisfaction survey mistake is to have unclear goals for the survey. Before you send survey questions to clients for feedback, ensure you know what you want to learn. Know the objectives or goals for creating the CSAT surveys first. Also, know whether the likely responses you will receive will help you get the answers you seek. This will help you create clear questions that are straight to the point.

4. Asking vague questions

One mistake most businesses make is asking vague questions that clients can misunderstand or interpret in different ways. Unclear questions that clients need help to understand make them provide unhelpful feedback. This is because they become confused about what exactly you expect them to answer. For example, compare these two questions:

  • Was the customer service good?
  • How was your customer service experience?

Notice the first one only leaves room to respond with a one-word answer such as “Yes” or “No.” Also, it’s not clear in this question what exactly “customer service” means. Is it referring to the purchasing process? A recent support incident? The company’s customer service as a whole? On the other hand, the second one gives the customer a chance to provide detailed feedback.

With detailed feedback, you can drill down to find enlightening details about the client’s satisfaction. Thus, the CSAT survey should include questions that are precise and straight to the point that also encourage in-depth responses. Create specific questions that target specific fields. This will encourage clients to give detailed feedback that will help you gauge the level of customer satisfaction.

5. Using same formats for all questions

Creating all your CSAT survey questions using one method can be quite limiting. There are different styles of writing survey questions. Some styles are better suited than others for getting specific feedback from clients. Common survey styles are open-ended, closed-ended, and numerical ratings.

Using open-ended questions leaves room for clients to give feedback with no restrictions. They are ideal for collecting detailed information for support leads to analyze and then take actions to improve. However, open-ended questions are time-consuming to answer. They are also quite difficult to analyze since there are many different responses from different clients.

Similar Format
Similar Format

On the other hand, using closed-ended questions, such as multiple-choice questions and numerical rating scales, are ideal for fast responses on qualitative surveys. They are brief and more likely to get feedback. However, they only offer specific responses that may not fully capture clients’ feelings.

It is advisable to use a mix of question types to conduct CSAT surveys. Using both open-ended and closed-ended questions can help support leads know the experience of the clients well.

6. Collecting irrelevant feedback from clients

Every question you create must be a vital part of the CSAT survey. These surveys are meant to determine whether clients are satisfied and to point out areas of the business that they need to improve.

However, sometimes no action is taken after receiving responses to CSAT surveys, and clients’ feedback becomes irrelevant. This should not be the case because it wastes the company’s and customers’ time, effort, and resources.

It is ideal to conduct CSAT surveys only when feedback is required. Less effort and time will be spent by both the clients and the support team. This will, in turn, boost the company’s productivity as it spares resources.

7. Drafting questions that are too long or too short

Customers value their time. For this reason, long CSAT survey questions can be too time-consuming for clients to read through and respond. One common customer satisfaction survey mistake is to draft very long or short questions. Avoid using wordy and complex questions because they make clients reluctant to provide responses and they may opt out of the survey entirely.

On the other hand, very short questions return less information, which might not be enough for you to analyze.

Create questions that are of reasonable length and well structured. This will ensure clients spend minimal time answering the survey but still provide insightful feedback.

8. Asking very personal questions or none at all

It is important to have an idea of who your customers are. For this reason, you can include basic demographic questions in your survey when necessary. These demographics include personal information such as age, gender, and occupation. Such details help in understanding your target client base better.

Questions to Ask in Customer Satisfaction Survey
Question to Ask

On the other hand, avoid including very personal questions. Some information might be too sensitive for clients to share, and they might feel their privacy is being breached. Due to this, it is advisable to make demographic questions optional. You can provide options for clients to opt out of the survey or skip these questions. Alternatively, you can provide options such as “Prefer not to say” or “Other” so that clients can decide what they feel comfortable sharing and what they don’t.

9. Using complex language that is difficult to understand

Different correspondents have different levels of understanding. Using difficult language, such as complex terms and vocabulary, as well as using technical language, is highly discouraged. Write the questions in language that any client, regardless of their literacy level, can easily understand and respond to. Also, use a friendly tone in your survey to make them comfortable.

10. Publishing CSAT surveys in a hurry

You might be under pressure to conduct surveys within a short period. This can lead to the publication of CSAT surveys that have grammatical errors, are vague, or miss key details. Clients who encounter such surveys might get confused or submit inaccurate feedback.

It is important to focus on details while drafting survey questions. Whenever you create survey questions, proofread the entire publication before you release it to clients for feedback. Take your time to ensure all the details are included and are in the right order in the survey to avoid confusing clients.

To know more about the benefits of a good CSAT survey, refer to this blog.


It is important to design the most efficient and relevant CSAT survey to get the best feedback from clients. Avoid all the customer satisfaction survey mistakes listed in this blog that can hinder you from creating and conducting an ideal survey to gauge your clients’ level of satisfaction.

With BoldDesk, get the best CSAT survey tools. Try the BoldDesk free trial today for the best customer feedback results. Contact the BoldDesk support team if you have any questions.

Esther Omuhatia Khachina
Esther Omuhatia Khachina
Khachina is a technical writer for the Syncfusion's BoldDesk software, having a keen interest in technology and data science. She takes pleasure in creating exceptional software documentation for all Syncfusion product users. To guarantee that all end-users benefit, she employs her expertise in research, writing, reviewing, and editing technical documents.

1 comment

  1. Bett
    December 3, 2022 at 9:57 am

    This is quite an informative article.

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