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Strategies to Improving Survey Response Rates Through Rewards and Gift Card Choices

Customer feedback plays a critical role in the success of any business. It helps you to understand your customer’s needs and preferences and gives you insights into how you can improve your offerings to satisfy them.

However, one of the biggest challenges businesses face is getting customers to respond to surveys. Low survey response rates can lead to unreliable data and make it difficult to make informed decisions.

Many businesses have started offering rewards or gift cards to customers who complete surveys to tackle this challenge. This strategy has proven to be an effective way to increase survey response rates and gather valuable insights to help improve your business.

What Is a Survey Incentive, and How Does It Increase Participation?

Survey incentives are rewards given to survey participants to encourage them to complete surveys. Rewarding individuals for their time and effort to share feedback is standard practice. They could be cash, gift cards, discounts, or free products/services. Survey incentives are designed to give an extra nudge to encourage people to complete surveys.

People are more likely to participate in surveys when they think their time is valued and they are getting something in return. Survey incentives serve as a motivation to fill out a survey completely.

With incentives in place, customers perceive that their opinions are valued, and the incentive creates a sense of obligation to provide feedback. This way, survey incentives increase participation and help businesses get more responses.

When businesses provide survey incentives, they usually get a higher response rate, which is effective in collecting data. Higher responses mean increased reliability of data and a more accurate understanding of customer’s needs and opinions.

Advantages include getting customer insights, understanding customer satisfaction levels, identifying problems, and improving customer relationships. All these insights generate a more significant benefit to the business in identifying areas for improvement and opportunities.

How to Improve Survey Response Rates with Gift Cards and Rewards

Rewards and gift cards are powerful incentives for increasing survey response rates. However, simply offering them is not always enough. Below are some strategies for improving survey response rates with rewards and gift cards:

Align Rewards with the Effort Involved

One of the most effective ways to improve survey response rates is by aligning the rewards with the effort involved. For example, consider the length and complexity of your survey questions. The more time and energy required to complete a survey, the greater the reward should be.

For example, a short, five-question survey may only need a small incentive, like a $5 gift card, while a longer survey that covers multiple topics may require a larger reward, such as a $50 gift card.

When deciding how much to offer as an incentive, consider the value of the information you are trying to gather. If the data you need is critical to your business, consider offering higher-value incentives to improve your chances of obtaining the insights you need.

Another thing to remember is that survey response rates typically decline when incentives become too large. So aim to offer enough incentive to motivate people, but not so much that it distracts from the primary goal of gathering feedback.

Send Incentives Quickly

Another critical factor in improving survey response rates is to send rewards quickly. Participants are more likely to respond to surveys if they know they will receive their rewards on time. Delayed or missing rewards could lead to a negative participant experience, which may decrease the chances of participation in future surveys.

It is important to communicate with participants when they can expect to receive their rewards. Then, make sure to follow through on that promise. Ensure the redemption process is simple, efficient, and hassle-free.

When you send rewards quickly and manage expectations, it helps build trust with participants and encourages them to participate in future surveys. This is especially the case if you use the same reward system for multiple surveys.

Make Sure Gift Cards are Redeemable in Your Participants’ Market

If you are using gift cards as a reward, ensure they are redeemable in the participant’s market. Offering gift cards that are only redeemable in certain areas could have an adverse effect on the survey experience, consequently reducing the response rate

Before deciding what gift card to offer, ensure that the gift card company has the necessary coverage as required by your research needs. For example, if you are conducting research in the United States, ensure the gift card company has redeemable cards across the country.

Offer a Choice for the Reward

Finally, offering a choice for the reward can increase response rates. People have different preferences, so allowing them to choose the type of reward they receive can make the process more personalised and engaging.

Offering a choice of rewards demonstrates that you understand and value the opinion of your participants. The reward choices should be relevant to your participants’ demographic or location. This can be as simple as offering a selection of gift cards or letting participants choose between cash or a donation to charity.

When selecting rewards, make sure to include something for everyone. This will ensure that all participants feel valued and appreciated and that you get the response rate and survey data your business needs.

Improve Your Survey Responses With The Right Incentive Approach

The right incentive approach can be a powerful tool for boosting survey response rates. To get the most out of this strategy, make sure to offer an appropriate reward that is redeemable in your participants’ market, send rewards quickly and efficiently, and give them a choice between different types of rewards.

By following these steps, you will ensure that all participants feel valued while also increasing participation levels so you can obtain valuable feedback from surveys. With the right incentives in place, you should see more responses which will help inform better decisions for your business.

Author Name: Cindy Mielke

Cindy is passionate about the incentive industry. In addition to her role as Vice President of Strategic Partners here at Tango, she is a Certified Professional of Incentive Management who proudly serves on two industry boards. When she’s not working, Cindy enjoys spending time with her family—including three cats, two dogs, and a horse—and sharing her love of nature as a Nebraska Master Naturalist.