Have you ever wanted to know what goes through your users’ heads when they land on your website? I certainly have. If you do, too, you’ll be thrilled to learn that there’s a tool you can use to garner all the insights you desire. That’s where the user experience survey comes into the picture. With its help, you can quickly get the low-down on — you guessed it — the user experience your site offers.
The good news is that building a user experience survey is relatively simple so you can start immediately. The even better use is that an effective user experience survey has many uses. Today, I’ll walk you through everything you need to know about crafting a user experience survey that will get you the information you need to make an informed decision about how to enrich your user experience.
What is a user experience survey?
A user experience survey is a tool you deploy to gain feedback and insight into how users rate or describe their experience with your website. Typically, you’ll ask users questions designed to determine what they think about your site’s navigation, design, usability, and overall contentment with the site.
Once users complete a user experience survey, your team should analyze the feedback to determine what users love or dislike about your site. From there, you can enact changes to improve your website and, ultimately, enhance the user experience. The result is happier users who are thrilled your company not only considered their feedback but also implemented it.
Why are user experience surveys worthwhile?
I’d advise you to offer a user experience survey because it allows you to get feedback from your users about how your site performs. Your users are the most crucial folks to get feedback from because they know firsthand the pain points of using your site. They also can point out what users love so you and your team keep it the same. You need to use a user experience survey to avoid losing out on actionable insights you can use to improve your site’s user experience.
How to Create a User Experience Survey.
Buckle up — it’s time to walk through the process of creating a user experience survey.
1. Decide what your objective is.
Are you trying to gain feedback about your website navigation? What about the homepage? Or is the shopping cart experience what you want to refine? Figuring out your ‘why’ is your top priority. It will be disjointed if you don’t decide on an objective before building your survey. And users don’t complete disjointed surveys.
2. Determine your audience.
Do you want insights from first-time site users? Or are repeat customers the audience you want to hone in on? Will the survey pop up after users purchase something or when they first land on the site? There’s no right or wrong answer — but make sure the pool of people you’re surveying represents your target audience.
3. Pick a survey method.
Now that you’ve determined your why and audience, it’s time to decide how to deploy your survey. My favorite tried-and-true survey creation software tools include Service Hub, SurveyMonkey, Typeform, and Google Forms.
4. Write your user experience survey questions.
Your next step is to write your questions. You’ll want to mix and match question types and how general or specific the questions are. Make sure the survey questions are unbiased. But before you start writing your questions, let’s quickly review a few different types of questions you should know about to create your user experience survey.
A multiple-choice question offers survey respondents a list of options. They are asked to select one or more answers from the provided options. These choices are usually presented in the form of a list.
Next up is an open-ended question. These questions provoke a conversation and require more than a one-word answer. Because of this, open-ended questions are a great addition to your user experience survey, as they allow users to share additional context or provide personal anecdotes.
Last (but certainly not least!), a rating scale question is a close-ended question that you use to understand better how your respondents feel about the topic at hand. With a rating scale question, respondents are asked to — you guessed it — quantify concepts or feelings with approximate numerical answers. An example of a rating scale question is one that utilizes the Likert scale.
5. Create a structure for your questions.
Once you’ve written your questions, it’s time to ensure you’re structuring them correctly. Start with vague, general questions and slowly progress into more in-depth ones. If your first question is extremely detailed and difficult to answer, you could see potential respondents bounce.
6. Actually build the survey.
You have your questions and know how you want to structure it. Now, you have to go into your survey software and build it. Remember to make it accessible, feature brand logos and colors to establish credibility, and ensure the layout is easy to navigate.
7. Do a test run and make tweaks as necessary.
If you want to maximize your user experience survey, pilot it first. To do so, select a small sample of users who are part of your target audience and get feedback regarding how the survey reads, its appearance, and its functionality. Encourage these early users to give feedback so you can refine your survey before disseminating it to your entire audience. From there, you’ll want to tweak it per feedback.
8. Launch your survey.
You did all the necessary work to create an engaging survey that will capture the information that you need from your respondents. Now, it’s time to launch it. When you do so, don’t set it and forget it — continue to update your survey with feedback as it rolls in.
9. Take appropriate action.
When you start getting feedback, you can now take the necessary steps to implement fixes that improve the user experience. This is the purpose of running a user experience survey — so don’t forget to make the changes your respondents suggest.
User Experience Survey Best Practices
Want to take your user experience survey to the next level? These tried-and-true best practices will help you create the most successful survey possible. Here’s what I suggest.
Make sure your survey is accessible.
You’ve taken rigorous steps to ensure your website is accessible. It’s just as crucial to guarantee that your survey is, too. Making sure your user experience survey is accessible isn’t just the right thing to do; it also allows you to cast the widest net possible. You want to hear what your users say, including those who need accessibility accommodations.
To build a user experience survey that is accessible, make sure that:
Users can navigate the survey using keyboard controls (This is essential for folks with low vision or blindness.)
There’s a sufficient color contrast between the background and text colors
If you are using graphics, there’s a meta description clearly detailing what’s in the image
You allow users to increase the size of the text.
You don’t forget about accessibility on the thank you page.
Let users share their thoughts via open-ended questions.
When I run user experience surveys, I always allow respondents to share their thoughts with an open-ended question. Sure, multiple choice and Likert scale questions are great — but when it comes to asking users for their opinions, there’s no substitute for a good old-fashioned open-ended question. The qualitative information you can collect via an open-ended question will give you deeper feedback.
Give users the option to skip a question.
Yes, it would be great if users responded to every question so you can get the whole picture — but the reality is that not every question will apply to every respondent.
You’ll get more responses by allowing users to skip questions. This is because respondents won’t fully leave the survey if you ask a question they’re uncomfortable answering; instead, they will skip the question and continue to the next one.
User Experience Survey Sample Questions
I think the best way to get a feel for a good user experience survey is to peruse some example questions. Here are 22 user experience survey questions to help you get the creative juices flowing as you build your own.
How did you come across our website?
Is this the first time you have visited our website?
If you have visited our website multiple times, how often do you visit?
How did you access our website today?
How visually appealing do you find our website on a scale from 1 (least appealing) to 10 (most appealing)?
Can you explain why you gave that rating for visual appeal?
How functional do you find our website on a scale from 1 (unfunctional) to 10 (most functional)?
Can you explain why you gave that rating for functionality?
Did you find the information you were looking for on our website?
If yes, please explain which tools you used (i.e., search bar, navigation menu). If not, please specify any obstacles.
How satisfied are you with our website’s overall navigation and ease of use?
Did you encounter any technical issues or errors during your visit?
How well does our website meet your needs and expectations on a scale of 1 (not at all) to 10 (the most)?
Is there a particular feature or function you want added to our website?
Did you find the information on our website relevant and useful?
Did you find our website visually consistent and aligned with our company branding?
How would you rate the user experience of our website on a scale of 1 (least user-friendly) to 10 (most user-friendly)?
Can you explain why you gave that rating for user experience?
How likely are you to visit our website again in the future?
Did you experience any security issues while browsing our website?
Did the menu navigation feel intuitive to you?
Is there anything else you would like to share or suggest to improve our website?
Start Building your User Experience Survey Today
Now that you know how to build a survey to evaluate how users perceive and experience your site, it’s time to use that knowledge to make an impact. Remember: Once your feedback starts rolling in, enacting meaningful changes will help you win the trust of your users.