Ultimate Guide to Intelligent Product Surveys (with 12 Examples)

Ultimate Guide to Intelligent Product Surveys (with 12 Examples)

How do you make the most of your product surveys? By ensuring they're delivered in-app, at exactly the right moment.

Paula Becchetti
13 min read
Ultimate Guide to Intelligent Product Surveys (with 12 Examples)

Whether you're just starting a SaaS business or you're well into the advanced stages of product development, collecting feedback from users is a top priority.

Building systems to facilitate regular feedback will help you achieve success for your product while avoiding presumptions and misconceptions about user experience.

Product surveys and user research are vital for product teams when it comes to gathering meaningful data or validating ideas and hypotheses.

What's more, feedback from properly delivered product surveys can help you illuminate all stages of the user story.

What is a Product Survey?

A product survey is a set of questions delivered to a targeted group of your user base, with the intent to gather valuable user feedback about the state of your user experience. Product surveys help you to build a data-centric understanding of your users; this will not only benefit your company but user interest too.

Stages of The Product Survey Cycle

A good way to understand a product survey is by way of the product cycle. Let’s break it down into actionable steps.

Step 1: Determining research objectives

This means you have to figure out what your learning needs are, in order to, then, define the right customer survey type you should use, and the best survey methodology for gathering the information you aim to have.

Step 2: Finding the right target for your sample

There’s no need to interview everyone in your target segment. Getting a representative slice of the cake will be enough to answer your questions and get the critical data you need.

There are some probability methods you can use to set your sample:

  • Random: equal probability for everyone to be selected
  • Systematic: individuals are selected at regular intervals
  • Stratified: population divided into groups according to different parameters; individuals then randomly sampled within the groups
  • Clustered: population divided into groups like in the previous option, but then whole clusters are selected randomly

Step 3: Asking the right questions

Depending on the type of survey you're creating (see below for 12 different customer survey types), you'll need to ask the right kind of questions. These could be open-ended or close-ended questions, multiple-choice or emoji-based questions, star rating questions, demographic questions, preference questions, emotional state questions, and more.

For example, you could ask:

  • How do you feel while using this new feature?
  • Would you recommend our product to your teammates?
  • How would you rate our product on a scale from 1 to 10?
  • Which of the following statements describes you best?
  • How easy was this step? How long did it take you to complete it?

Asking the right survey questions at the right moment will help you get the most valuable feedback from your users.

Step 4: Creating the first draft of your product survey

First, you can create a list of the questions to which you need an answer. There shouldn’t be more than 10-12 questions to avoid losing the attention of your respondents.

Then, pay attention to the product survey design:

  • How do you group the questions?
  • What should users answer at any specific moment?
  • Does the design match your brand's style?
  • Is the servey design going to improve user experience?
  • Where to position your servey and hot to present it?

These are only some of the questions to consider, the definitive list will depend on the customer survey type you create.

Step 5: Choosing the right user feedback tools for your product surveys

The best user feedback tools will enable you to create customized, short-form surveys that will appear within the product and illuminate responses by attaching relevant data and information, like when and where a decision was made in the user journey.

Typical customer feedback surveys that aren't displeyed in product will be longer, and delivered via email or web form. For this purpose, you can choose from a variety of online survey tools.

If you want to run your survyes in-product, you can use a user feedback tool, such as Chameleon, to create and run in-app microsurveys which will help you better understand the user's motivation and capture results that are more accurate.

That's because surveys with Chameleon are tied to a set of in-app actions that give context to the response. In other words, when you know what the user has done immediately before answering your survey, you can better understand the motivation behind their answer.

Capturing user feedback at that very moment is more useful than surveying users generically about the product because:

  • General feedback can be vague, with lower response rate
  • Surveys via non-product channels may fall out of context

Step 6: Publishing the product survey

Publish (or perform) the survey respecting your user’s anonymity, asking one question at a time and avoiding influencing users' opinion by how you formulate the questions.

Keep in mind that you should focus on the time needed for a response and not on the number of questions. Also, you should always give a way out in case a user doesn't want to answer immediately. This can be done in a user feedback tool by adding a "snooze" option for re-opening the survey later on.

Step 7: Iterating and improving the survey

The first product survey you design is not going to be the only one. As in any development, you should iterate and improve based on customer feedback. Remember to include this in your goals, especially if you're just starting a business.

Maybe this time you’ve started with a small sample but next time you can think of widening your slice of cake.

Step 8: Evaluating the results

Based on the survey results, that become statistics, you’ll be able to infer for the rest of your target population. See if they validate or invalidate your hypotheses. Search for common points and brand new findings.

Then, act upon your insights to iterate your product and improve user experience by addressing customer issues and increasing customer satisfaction scores over time.


12 customer survey types you can use for in-product surveys

1. NPS Survey (Net Promoter Score)

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An NPS survey determines how likely a user is to recommend your product or service to a friend. This helps measure customer loyalty and identify different customer segments.

Results are indicated on a scale of 0-10, grouped into:

  • Detractors (0-6)
  • Passives (7-8)
  • Promoters (9-10)

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In the end, you’ll subtract the percentage of promoters from the percentage of detractors.


NPS = (Number of Promoters / Total Responses) – (Number of Detractors / Total Responses)


As you can notice, Net Promoter Score survey will completely ignore passive respondents.

During the last decade, NPS has become popular, because many say it's the best indicator for future SaaS growth. It's a very simple product marketing tool with many applications. It's also easy to understand for deployers and respondents and also easy to implement.

When you perform the customer survey, you’ll optionally be asking respondents to justify their answers. This will be of help as it will point out some areas of improvement. You can choose to deploy the survey by email or by using an in-app solution.

The timing for sending this product survey will be critical for the results. Try not to send it after a too good or a too bad experience that you have already identified, as it will directly affect the results.

How to do an NPS survey with Chameleon

Chameleon allows you to send NPS surveys when they're most relevant (immediately after specific in-app actions).

An NPS survey is one of the premade customer survey types available in Chameleon:

NPS survey


Make your NPS surveys count

Get highly relevant feedback by using Chameleon to send your surveys in-app

2. CES Survey (Customer Effort Score)

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The CES (Customer Effort Score) survey is useful to measure the level of effort a client has to make to interact with a company.

For instance, when they want to solve an issue, buy, or return a product. The premise here is that customers will be more engaged if the level of effort the brand requires is lower.

Sometimes, the respondents will use a scale that goes from “very easy” to “very difficult”, but you can also see options of emojis or 1-5 scales.

According to the book The Effortless Experience:


“96% of customers with a high-effort service interaction become more disloyal compared to just 9% who have a low-effort experience”.


As a customer survey type, Customer Effort Score should be always used along with another product survey like NPS, to better measure clients’ loyalty.

The CES in-product survey should be sent as soon as specific interactions occur at customer journey touchpoints:

  • After purchase or subscription
  • After adding a new feature
  • After interaction with customer service

If you want to have more information, you can also ask users to justify their answers. This custoemr survey type shouldn’t have more than two questions.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

You can publish a CES Microsurvey quickly and easily with Chameleon, since it's one of the default templates.

Here's what it might look like:

ces survey

3. CSAT Survey (Customer Satisfaction)

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The CSAT (Customer Satisfaction) product survey also determines the level of satisfaction, but it’s not the same as NPS. NPS measures the level of satisfaction in general while CSAT only does it for specific experiences.

For this microsurvey, you’ll see options of scales from 1 to 5, emoji, or even phrases. You should keep it as simple as possible. The five choices represent different levels of satisfaction:

  • Very unsatisfied (1)
  • Unsatisfied (2)
  • Neutral (3)
  • Satisfied (4)
  • Very satisfied (5)

To figure out the results you’ll have to calculate the following formula:


(Number of satisfied customers (4 and 5) / Number of survey responses) x 100 = % of satisfied customer


The timing of the CSAT is crucial. You should use it after specific moments in the customer journey, like:

  • The “aha!” moment during the onboarding
  • Before renewal of the subscription
  • During the user onboarding and activation flow
  • After interaction with customer service for a specific issue
  • After the user has performed an action and reached a predefiend milestone

As with CES, you can always dig deeper to better understand areas of improvement. Running a CSAT survey is a great way to understand how to cultivate customer love.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

CSAT is another default Microsurvey type within Chameleon and is easy to create, customize, and publish.

csat survey

4. PM Fit Survey (Product-Market Fit)

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The product-market fit product survey is a single question survey type designed to figure out if you’ve achieved product-market fit for a specific user segment. This would mean you have proven your original value hypothesis. You would've proven that you were right about why a user should choose your product or service.

YWith this type, you should only survey recent users (not more than two weeks after they sign up) and those who have used your product or service at least twice. You can take advantage of this product marketing survey also to segment your users more, performing the survey on different segments so that then you can continue with different actions for each of them. The question will be:

How would you feel if you could no longer use [product / service]?

The answers will be among these:

  • Very disappointed
  • Somewhat disappointed
  • Not disappointed (it isn’t that useful)
  • N/A – I no longer use the product

Of course, you shouldn’t use customer satisfaction surveys when it’s still too early and they haven't had enough time to engage with your product. The results will be good if you end up with 40% or more of “very disappointed” users.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

For this purpose, a simple Three Option Microsurvey will do the trick.

Here's a snapshot of what it might look like:

5. Feature opt-in survey

If you are doubting about adding different new features for your product or service, you can always ask your users about their opinion. If you have a specific agreement for your users, you’ll be leaving behind assumptions on what they are expecting or what they want.

Also, sometimes you’ll be able to add the feature only for those who opted in. For example, this might be during the Beta phase.

Feature opt-in is as important as feature opt-out. You are focusing your efforts on the user experience and their desires and real needs. A feature opt-in microsurvey is asking your users specific questions about new features or improvements you want to work on.

Make sure you explain the best possible way the feature you’re offering them. Explain the benefits by using your value proposition. This survey will help you get to the next phase of your product/service development.

If you have an app that helps users to communicate through chat, a feature opt-in survey could be based on asking your users if they’d like to use video calls. It will always be related to an upgrade.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

With a Two Option Microsurvey:

6. Beta feedback survey

If you want to test a product or service while gathering user feedback, the Beta feedback survey should be the one you go for.

The usual questions you can ask are related to features, but those are not the only ones you can include. In fact, you should think about three kinds of questions:

Questions related to needs:

  • Why does the user need to solve the problem?
  • How has the user tried to solve the problem before?

The idea is to let the user speak freely. These kinds of questions are ideal to identify possible solutions or validate your value hypothesis.

“What are the benefits of this product / service to you?”

Questions related to features:

  • What does the user dislike?
  • What does the user like?
  • What would the user change?

These are questions designed to gather feature analytics and specific requests about features from your users.

“Who else do you think would need/like this feature?”

“How do you use the feature now? What is the workflow?”

Questions related to UX/UI:

  • What was the first impression the user got about the app?
  • How difficult was it for the user to understand how to perform an action or how to use a feature?

These questions will allow you to understand if the flow can be improved, also if the layout is optimal to find everything and if the information is clear.

“How difficult was it to upload the files?”

The Beta feedback product survey is great to find bugs, to improve user experience and to get to know better your users’ potential needs and desires, while still in the early stage of development.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

Any of Chameleon's Microsurveys will be effective for gathering feedback on Beta testing. Whichever you choose, your data will be highly relevant because the in-app Microsurveys can be contextually triggered.

Here's a list of Chameleon's various Microsurvey types:

chameleon microsurveys

7. Churn feedback survey

When you are about to lose a customer or you have already lost them, it’s advisable to get some feedback, so that you can avoid losing more users or even recover the client that is willing to leave.

To improve your offering you must know the reason why the user is leaving.

Is it due to:

  • Some other company that’s better or newer?
  • Is the product not efficient enough to solve the user’s problem?
  • Is the subscription meant to target another kind of user?
  • Does the product present obstacles the user cannot surpass?

The churn feedback product survey is meant to help you with this matter.

The questions should be open-ended so that the user can freely express their opinion. However, if you have hints on what the issue could be, you can also present a multiple-choice survey but, make sure to always leave one last option for the user to include comments.

“Why did you decide to quit / uninstall / cancel your subscription?”

  • I never manage to finish an entire movie.
  • I could never find a movie I liked.
  • I don’t understand how to use the platform.
  • I forgot I had the service.
  • I don’t use it enough to justify the fee.
  • Other (add your comment)

By identifying problematic areas, or types of issues, the churn feedback product survey aims to increase retention metrics and even to attract new users, if you finally improve your solution.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

This is really easy to do with Chameleon by triggering a Microsurvey when a user takes a particular action - this could be when they click the "cancel subscription" button, or when the cancellation page loads.

chrun feedback survey

8. "Aha!" moment survey

The "aha!" moment is an emotional positive reaction to the discovery of a feature. It can happen with the first use of the product, or even before trying it. It can also happen after the user has been using the solution for a while.

An "aha!" moment discovery survey is capable of identifying that moment, in which your user recognized the true value of your solution. This means that it will help you find out when (and why) they truly engaged with your brand.

These customer survey type is usually designed as a free-form. Formulate the questions based on your value hypotheses.

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Deeply understanding the "aha!" moment can lead you to better figure out how to guide new targeted users. It will be the North Star to your company. It will also be good to know if the "aha!" moment is the same for everyone, or if it changes depending on the user.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

Pretty much any kind of segment you can think of, you can target with a Chameleon Tour. What that means is, you can trigger the "aha!" moment survey on any kind of event, to any kind of user, depending on how you define criteria for your "aha!" moments and onboarding milestones.

You might use a CES microsurvey with a small tweak, to gather data about how your users are responding to your onboarding milestones. You can then use this data to refine and optimize the milestones you use to define your "aha!" moments.

aha moment user feedback survey

9. Persona identification survey

The risk of failing to understand your users is big. The Persona Identification in-product survey has the goal of enabling personalization of onboarding experience. In this way, you’ll create the best possible experience for each individual, or at least for a specific audience segment.

Getting a Persona Identification will help you to better know the behavioral drivers of your clients and their mindset.

Open-ended questions will help you frame needs and motivations; 5 to 7 questions is the ideal number for this survey.

Things to consider:

  • What can the user tell us about themselves?
  • What are they using the product/service for?
  • Have they considered another option?
  • What features will be more important to them?

How to do this survey with Chameleon

Easy - with a Five Option Microsurvey. Simply define the different persona roles (Marketing, Sales, Engineering, etc.) and decide when it should be triggered.

persona identification survey

10. Fake door test

The fake door test is a way to prove demand for a new feature or product. Your goal with ths experiment is to measure interest at an early stage (before development) and to get feedback from users that can shape product direction. You will also be learning which is the target audience that shows interest and which CTAs or images work better.

You can build an advertisement, button, or even website. It should always be used carefully as it could decrease credibility. When the test has finished, you should always close with an explanation of your goals and a thank you message.

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How to do this survey with Chameleon

You could use a Two Option Microsurvey to add a simple thumbs-up or thumbs-down response. Since this is a Chameleon Microsurvey, it would automatically collect the ID and all relevant information about the respondent.

fake door product survey

11. Usability study recruitment survey

Finding people to take part in user research can be tricky. If it’s your first usability study and you don’t know how to recruit, you should follow this process:

  1. Screen to survey the right type of user
  2. Schedule more users than you will need
  3. Pay the participant users

To screen tightly, you will need a short questionnaire that helps you select the participants that better represent your audience. This will be your product survey for usability study recruitment. A couple of ideas:

  • Email outreach
  • In product opt-in

In both cases you can feature a way to schedule the sessions, capture job title and some other variables to segment the feedback. Who do you send this survey to? If you already have current users, of course, you should take advantage.

If you are building your database from scratch, it will depend on your target. Avoid sending it to your personal database or a random volunteer beta tester list.

You should build your sample based on your users’ ideal characteristics, behaviors, and attitudes. Using the power of social media advertising could be a good idea to reach your specific target audience.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

You can use a Chameleon Two Option Microsurvey to quickly indentify engaged users who might be interested in taking part in a usability study.

If you set this up with Chameleon, Calendly is integrated by default, too. That way, your respondents are automatically scheduled for a quick screening interview by someone on your Product or Research team.

usability study recruitment survey

12. Competitor usability testing survey

To better understand the product you need to build, you can create a competitor usability testing survey. This process will help you know the competitors’ area of improvement (that you can take advantage of), your targeted users’ mindset, and some other insights about your value proposition.

The methodology is exactly the same as if you were performing the usability testing for yourself, but made upon a competitor. The idea is that sometimes, just a little upgrade you can perform on a product idea will make a substantial difference to the user.

Don’t forget to leave room also for users to give feedback about your surveys, so the next time you’ll improve your user research methods or find more suitable user feedback tools.

How to do this survey with Chameleon

  • A simple Two Option Microsurvey (like the example above)
  • An Input Microsurvey

The principle is simple: the Sales team will tag users that are known to be trialling a competitor solution. At some point during that process, you can schedule a Microsurvey to target the relevant user segment through integrations and ask them their reasoning behind evaluating your product.

competitor usability testing survey

Conclusion

A continuos collection of user feedback is one of the best strategies your product team can use for gathering insights to drive product growth. Using various customer survey types and user feedabck tools to run contextual in-product surveys can be a significant addition to your product and UX tweaks, itterations, and improvements.

The type of a product survey will depend on your needs and goals you want to achieve. With the 12 survey types we outlined here, there are plenty of choices for you to start.

Once you decide which survey type to use, the next steps will include segmenting users, choosing the right type of questions, designing surveys to drive more engagement, and then analayzing data, evaluating results, and identifying areas for improvement.

Run product surveys with Chameleon

In-app Microsurveys allow you to capture important user feedback when it's most relevant

Effective engagement, made easy.