Understand Your Users Better With Surveys

If you’ve heard me speak about Web Analytics at a search engine conference, you likely have heard me say that Web analytics can give you the what and the where, but not they why.

Survey your visitors for more meaningful Web Analytics

Too many w’s for you? Web analytics measures metrics of what visitors do when then come to your site and from where they came. However, they do not tell you at which stage of the buyer behavior process your visitors are or why he or she came to your site.

So you know if a visitor comes in from a particular campaign, and you see what pages that visitor views and know that conversion doesn’t happen. Now what. The data can’t tell you why and you surely can’t reach out through that visitor’s screen and ask them.

Or can you?

I suggest to people the best way to figure out what your visitors are thinking is to ask them. This must be done through some sort of survey tool or fill-out Web-based form. Granted, most people shy away from these, unless they really get something out of them. That’s why the survey must be short and unobtrusive. Don’t clutter the screen, but ask 2 or 3 questions with prompts for the user to make it easy. Simple. Measurable. Done.

Less than a week after I return home from SES, I’m visiting BlogWorld’s conference site and see the following pop up on my screen:

Visitor survey on the blogworld Web site.

Web site survey for trying to determine the visitor’s intent. You can’t know why the visitor came unless you ask. Plain and simple.

Well done, blogworld.  Can I speak now?

1 thought on “Understand Your Users Better With Surveys”

  1. You should also look at WebEngage sometime Thom – http://webengage.com. An easy way to conduct short targeted surveys on your website. Not only does it let you conduct surveys on your website, but it also lets you “target” your survey to a specific audience. E.g. only for visitors coming to your site via Google search, only for visitors to your site’s pricing page and spending at least 30 seconds there etc.

    Disclosure: I am Avlesh – co-founder and ceo at WebEngage.

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