The average reading speed for Americans is between 200 and 300 words per minute. By our calculations, this blog should take you 2–3 minutes to read.
Now, imagine that you reached that 2–3 minutes before you were halfway through reading. Would you continue reading? Would you get frustrated, but finish anyway? Do you trust that other people would be pleased after being roped into reading a too-long blog?
Credit unions who want to gain valuable member insight by surveying their members need to respect their members’ time. The best way to do that is to keep surveys at an appropriate length. Here’s how many questions we think you should put on your credit union member surveys.
(In the interest of respecting your time, the bare-bones answer is under the “Keep It Short” heading below.)
How Many Questions Do You Have?
You probably have more than a few questions that you’d like to ask your members. Each question you ask helps you get closer to providing excellent member services for them.
Unfortunately, few people like taking long surveys. I’ve been tricked into taking a few 50-question surveys myself, and I wasn’t thrilled about it. Don’t be that credit union. Asking too many questions in one survey might dissuade your members from completing it.
Fortunately, time is on your side. So long as you have members, you have a well of potential feedback. You don’t need to ask any member 50 questions at a time—instead, you can ask them 50 questions over the course of a few years. You’ll still get all the information you want, but you won’t bother your members while you get it.
What Kind of Survey Is It?
Another consideration for how many questions to include on your credit union survey is what kind of survey you’re sending out.
If it’s a relationship survey, then you need only one question. The reason for this is that relationship surveys are an industry-standard metric that requires only a single question.
However, if you’re sending a transaction survey, you might want to include a few other questions as well. There’s no reason to limit yourself to one question when you may have several regarding their transaction (or transactions). Asking a few questions about a member’s most recent transaction or interaction will give you’re a better cross-section of their experience and allow you to drill deeper into any potential issues or insights.
Keep It Short
We think the best way to give out surveys is to respect your members’ time. With that in mind, we’ve found a sweet spot that balances the effort required of your members and both the quality and quantity of the information you can get.
Your credit union member surveys should rarely include more than five questions. Additionally, you should limit the number of open-ended (essay-style) questions to one or two.
If you surpass five questions or ask too many open-ended questions, then you risk frustrating your members. Remember: they’ve already completed their transaction—they’re probably not terribly excited to go over it again. Keep their eyes from rolling by keeping it short.
We keep our blog updated weekly with news and insights about surveys and the credit union industry. If you’d like to read more about credit union surveys and survey strategy, follow the links below!