One of the easiest ways to maximize engagement with surveys is to make sure the recipient receives it at the right time. But when is the best time to send a survey?
In this blog, we’ll cover a few quick rules of thumb about when to send surveys. Following these rules should get you close to an optimal open and response rate. However, you’ll have to test and tweak things yourself to truly optimize your strategy.
The Best Time to Send Surveys
The best time to send a survey is right after a member completes a transaction. This will ensure that the transaction is still clear in their mind—and unaffected by other factors that might alter their mood.
So, if a member visits the branch, send a survey within 10 minutes of their visit. You will get the best, truest data. It’s more important to get good data than it is to get good response rates.
However, surveying immediately after a transaction may not yield the best response rates. And not all surveys can or should be triggered by a transaction.
Which Day(s) to Send Surveys
Everyone receives too many emails. It’s very easy for any member’s inbox to get cluttered, and some messages will simply go unread.
But you can improve the likelihood that the member will open your survey email by sending on the right days of the week.
Which days are those?
Well, it may differ depending on your member base. But the best days to send emails are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
Don’t send emails on Fridays or Saturdays. Most people start to check out on Fridays, and Saturdays are usually reserved for more exciting activities. You may see mixed results on Mondays and Sundays.
What Time(s) of Day to Send Surveys
Many people mistakenly think that sending emails early in the morning is best. It’s not! Although there are those who check their emails first thing in the morning, the best open rates are later.
If we were to grade the best time of day to send emails and surveys, we’d say:
- 7–10am: B-. You’ll get the early birds and good open rates, but overall engagement will fall. This is when people skim messages—not when people put off other tasks to respond.
- 10am–2pm: A+. People take breaks throughout their workday to check emails, texts, etc. Emails in this time frame consistently get the best open and engagement rates.
- 2pm–5pm: B+. Open rates fall slightly in the late afternoon while people start wrapping up their workdays. Engagement rates are higher than they are in the morning though—there are fewer other emails to compete for attention.
- 5pm–9pm: C. If your member base is wealthier, you’ll likely see slightly better engagement during these hours. Nevertheless, evenings are often reserved for commutes, families, and relaxation.
- All other times: D-. We won’t bore you with an explanation, but it’s better than nothing. You get it.
The main takeaway here is that late morning and early afternoon are the best times to send emails and surveys. Early mornings may have good open rates, but the engagement rates are lower because that’s when everyone else sends emails. Don’t try to compete with other emails!
When in Doubt, Trust the Data
Keep track of your open and click through rates. Test sending at different times. Your experience may be different from the rest of us, and you’ll learn the best time to send emails after extensive A/B testing.
Trusting the numbers is paramount, but so is understanding your member base. SEG particulars, time zones, and other demographic factors should inform your overall strategy.
Start with the best practices above, and then refine from there.
If you’re not sure where to start your survey program, try our 12-Month Survey Roadmap.