We’ve all heard the old chestnut ‘there aren’t enough hours in a day’, but as a small business owner you truly understand how that feels.
The to-do list of a small business owner never gets any shorter - it’s no easy task to run a successful company - but it’s one you’re super passionate about, and we want to help you make it a triumph.
With so many jobs to be done, the key to nailing it is focus - which task is going to have the biggest impact on your business, your customer satisfaction, your employee productivity, and ultimately your success?
Surveys can give you the answers and help guide your focus, so in this article, we’ll tell you why they’re such a super tool and share 10 free online survey tools you can start using today.
The humble survey has the power to provide invaluable insights to small business owners by allowing you to listen to what your customers (and workforce) have to say and acting on it.
Hearing from your customers is critical to helping prioritize your to-do list and focus on what really matters and will help your business grow.
With a survey, you can get answers to questions relating to:
We could go on and on. In a recent survey it was found that of small businesses who do regular surveys with customers and staff, 73% expect their business revenue to grow in the next 12 months, compared to the national average of just 55%.
Because survey feedback leaves business owners confident in the direction they’re taking and allows them to tailor their offering to address things that truly matter and will contribute to business success.
And it’s not just positive feedback that matters - identifying niggles pronto means you can address them and rectify them ASAP too.
Sold? Now let’s take a look at your options for online survey tools you can put into action today, and the best news is they don’t need to cost you a penny.
We’ll start with a disclaimer - yes we said we’ll share free tools, but it’s worth noting that each of the options listed also offers a paid-for version.
In the interest of completeness, we’ll give you a brief overview of what the paid-for tools offer that the free versions don’t, so you can make an informed decision.
You can create a free personal account on Google forms and you’ll get access to a simple to use survey tool with the added bonus that Google allows you to analyse and follow up your research in Google Sheets.
As part of the free service, you can include YouTube videos and images into your surveys to give them a more interactive feel, and of course, you’ll get all the collaborative tools you’d expect from Google and see in the likes of Slides, Docs, and Sheets.
If you want a business account you’ll need to pay a monthly cost - it’ll give you unlimited Cloud storage, data loss prevention, quizzes, business email, and shared calendars.
Cost: Basic £5 per month. Business £10 per month. Enterprise £20.50 per month.
Survey Monkey is probably the name most often associated with online surveys and their free version is easy to use and well suited to small-scale surveys.
However, you’re limited to 10 questions per survey and 100 responses per survey with the free option, so if you’re looking for something more comprehensive you’ll need to pay or look elsewhere.
Opt to upgrade and you’ll get unlimited surveys, questions, and responses, a shared asset library, and multilingual surveys.
Cost: Team advantage £28 per month. Individual advantage £33 per month.
You’d be forgiven for not having heard of this one, but its lack of reputation is more than made up for with its features. With the free version, you’ll get unlimited surveys and questions, with real-time reporting.
Plus, you can share your surveys to social from the platform, and elsewhere via embeds and links. You’ll also have access to Toluna’s global community - ideal if you’re looking to expand the scale of your survey.
All of the above plus unlimited email invites, advanced reporting and analytics, advanced filter logic, and custom end pages.
Cost: Premium feature plan £60 per month.
Again you’ll get unlimited surveys with this one, plus:
If you’re looking to create lots of surveys - this could be a good option for your business.
Opt to upgrade and you’ll get sidebar forms, pop-up surveys, Salesforce, MailChimp and WordPress integration, and custom welcome and thank you screens.
Cost: Essentials £0.04 per response per month. Premium £0.07 per response per month.
Once more with the free version of this tool, you’ll get unlimited surveys, responses, and questions. You can also embed your surveys and put them on social media, as well as delete unwanted participants from your cohort.
A nice feature with Surveyplant is its responsive layout - great for anyone anticipating a lot of responses on mobile (likely most of you). You’ll also have the option to present your survey in over 20 different languages.
Cough up and you can add images to your surveys, export the results, access custom themes, question branching and survey length estimate.
Cost: £16.50 per month. £148 per year.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, you’ll also get unlimited polls and surveys with Crowdsigal, and you can also add images, polls, and quizzes to add a little razzle-dazzle to your research.
However, Crowdsignal limits access to poll voting and report filtering, which might hinder your analysis somewhat, so bear that in mnd.
Fork out every month and you’ll be able to add your own domain name, have multiple user accounts, and access to advanced reporting.
Cost: Pro £14 per month. Corporate £61.50 per month.
Coined the ‘conversational survey creator’, Typeform allows free users to insert images, videos, and GIFs, as well as a customisable welcome screen - ideal for branding.
Both MailChimp and Google Sheets are built into the platform making for a streamlined user experience for existing users.
Good to know: Online reviews are super positive for Typeform.
Additional features on offer for paying customers include logic jump, file uploads, and respondent notifications.
Cost: Pro £24 per month. Pro+ £46 per month.
If you’re looking for more qualitative and long-form responses to your research SurveyNuts could be a great option.
It offers open-ended questions, picture polls, and your respondents can upload their own files if they see fit to answer your questions more accurately.
You can incorporate different types of questions within one survey, to make things more engaging and interactive, and create a quiz if that floats your boat too.
Unlimited questions and responses, view respondents’ individual answers and export your results.
Cost: Basic £17 per month. Pro £25 per month. Plus £39 per month.
Millions of startups around the world working to grow their business turn to Net Promoter Scores (NPS) as a method of collecting and measuring feedback and boosting customer satisfaction.
SightMill is a specialist NPS customer satisfaction software which allows you to send surveys by email, text message, or via your website.
There’s no free version but there is a free trial so you can test the waters. All the advanced features on offer can be accessed across the varying tiers of membership.
Cost: Primer £22 per month. Starter £44 per month. Growth £88 per month. Professional £180 per month.
The free version of SmartSurvey allows you to craft unlimited surveys but with a finite number of questions and responses.
It’ll also let you create two tracking links and deliver you your survey responses in real-time.
A strong support team is listed as a big plus in reviews, although some criticise its lack of analytics capabilities.
Upgrade to get unlimited questions and responses, multiple user accounts, custom branding and themes.
Cost: Pro £22.50 per month. Business £45 per month.
We can’t tell you which tool will be the right fit for your business, but our advice is to sit down and work out which features you place the most value on and take it from there.
Although it might be tempting to go with the most well-known provider (cough, Survey Monkey) bear in mind their reputation allows them to offer fewer features with their free version than some up and coming names in the market.
All that’s left for us to say is good luck!
Prices correct as of Jan 2021