SMS surveys are an important survey channel that allows you to collect customer feedback and insights from your audience simply by using their phone numbers. However, as useful as SMS surveys are, they can also be quite complex to create, distribute, and analyze. In fact, it’s almost impossible to carry out this process manually.
In order to run SMS surveys efficiently, you need to use SMS survey software. The tools can help you reduce the time and effort involved in creating questionnaires, arranging them to create the structure of the survey, creating a list of survey respondents, and sending the survey to each person via SMS.
In this buyers guide, we explain the features and benefits of SMS survey software as well as the market trends you should keep in mind when purchasing this software.
Here's what we'll cover:
What is SMS survey software?
SMS survey software helps automate the creation and distribution of surveys via text messaging. The tool helps create the surveys using pre-built templates and predefined questions that can be modified as needed. It then helps forward the surveys to individual respondents, sent out in batches or in bulk. Once the respondents answer the survey questions, the tool helps analyze the answers received by tracking the open rates, the number of respondents who completed the survey, and the number of respondents that opted out of the survey.
A view of the trend in the survey responses in Delighted (Source)
Common features of SMS survey software
It’s easier to select the right tool when you know what the common features are. Let’s look at some common features of a text survey tool.
|Alerts and notifications
||Receive instant alerts for new, negative, or positive feedback. Set up alerts if the negative or positive feedback dips below a certain level.
||Target the right audience for your survey by defining the demographic factors such as age, gender, profession, and geographical location.
||Organize your contacts into groups based on criteria such as profession and age, and send personalized surveys to each category.
||Create buyer personas based on your desired audience types. Share the surveys with the desired personas and measure the performance of your surveys for each buyer persona.
||Check the level of engagement your survey is receiving. This includes the number of survey takers, the views your survey is getting, the number of responses received, the number of opt-outs, etc.
||Send out surveys in bulk to a wide audience, check their performance, and follow-up with them for their feedback.
What type of buyer are you?
Before evaluating text survey software options, you should assess the kind of buyer you are. The majority of buyers in this market belong to one of these categories:
- Non-profit organizations: These buyers include nonprofit organizations that need cost-effective solutions for transactional purposes or to collect insightful information about their services. They need an SMS survey tool that offers them the essential features required for running a text message survey such as contact management and engagement tracking. Moreover, they also need a tool that offers some flexibility in the pricing plans such as pay-as-you-go plans, rolling contracts, free plans, or discount offers.
- For-profit organizations: These buyers include any organization that operates for profit. They need the tool to collect feedback from or insights into their target audience or buyers to modify their products or services. They may be willing to spend extra dollars for advanced features such as custom domain branding, customizing the text message receiver’s name, and connection to the business’ email server.
Benefits of SMS survey software
Here are the key benefits of choosing an SMS survey platform:
- Reduced time: The tool collects and processes survey data in real-time. It means that you can readily access the survey results, see how many respondents have answered, and whether the feedback trend is negative or positive. This saves the time and effort that you’d otherwise invest in collecting and processing individual survey responses. With the real-time analysis, you can also modify the survey based on the responses received to improve the quality of information you’re gathering.
- Better quality: The tool also offers pre-built templates that help you get started with the survey process. You can access predefined survey questions, structures, and question types, such as branched or type-in-the-answer questions. This provides you with a foundation for your surveys that you can modify as per your needs and ensures that you capture all the requisite information. Moreover, real-time engagement tracking also helps you see if your survey is fetching the insights you need or if you need to make improvements.
Market trends to understand
Here are the latest SMS survey software market trends that you should be aware of:
- Machine learning to improve the quality of survey data collection. With the help of machine learning, the software tool can differentiate between genuine answers and answers that have been provided as fillers to quickly complete a survey. These may include answers written in gibberish and flatlining (meaning that a respondent selects the same option for all the answers). By eliminating such answers, the tool improves the quality and accuracy of the insights collected.
- Using natural language processing (NLP) for deeper analysis. When paired with survey software, NLP helps to identify the trends in survey responses. It can be implemented in multiple ways such as by generating a word cloud, by identifying the frequency of certain words in the responses, and by distributing the answers based on certain themes that emerge in the response. All of these techniques help identify trends in the responses which may otherwise get missed. It helps dissect the responses further based on the words that occur in the responses.
Note: The application selected in this article is an example to show a feature in context and is not intended as an endorsement or a recommendation. It has been obtained from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.