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Shopify Summit: Post Purchase Surveys

How Much Do You Know About Your Customers?

What could you tell me about your customers if I asked you these few simple questions:

Where do most of them find out about you?
Who else do they consider buying from?
What product are they looking for next?

If you’re not the brand that knows the most about your customers then some other brand is, and that’s a huge advantage.

In this 5 minute blog post, I’m going to share why I think post-purchase surveys are an amazing tool for growing your business, and why understanding your customers’ experience is essential to creating better products.

The Best Way to Get Valuable Insight

Right now, Shopify is investing in learning more about their Shopify Plus customers (like me).

They flew me out to their headquarters to speak to their team of 80 customer service reps, so I could help them better understand the experience of the merchants they’re serving.

They wanted to know what challenges we’re going through and what our lives look like. And no matter what you’re selling, you can get a lot of value from doing the same thing in your business.

Except unlike Shopify, you don’t need to fly out your best customers to get this information.

At Smart Marketer we gather this information by sending post-purchase surveys to all our buyers, and the insight we get from their answers is incredible.

The Post-purchase Survey I Use in My Business

Check out the survey questions we use in BOOM! by Cindy Joseph, my 8-figure cosmetics brand on Shopify:

1. What can you tell us about yourself?
2. Why did you decide to buy today from BOOM! by Cindy Joseph?
3. What doubts or hesitations did you have before completing your purchase?
4. How can we make your shopping experience better? (website, emails etc.)
5. Which other brands did you consider before deciding on BOOM! by Cindy Joseph?
6. What new BOOM! products would you like us to add?
7. Anything else you’d like to tell us?

We’ve received 21,257 responses to this survey so far which is way more than we have time to analyze, but customers’ answers to these questions have influenced everything from product development to website optimization.

I’m not exaggerating when I say this post-purchase survey has helped my business generate millions of dollars in sales.

Post-Purchase Survey Best Practices

Here’s a great piece of advice: Make your survey questions open-ended.

That way the answers are in your customers’ own words, which are a goldmine as a copywriting resource. And if you avoid limiting customers to multiple choice answers, you’ll get valuable answers that you couldn’t have predicted.

And when your customers buy from you a second or third time, send them a new survey. They are what we call hyper-consumers, and learning what they like can unlock huge opportunities for your business.

Like inspiring your next big idea.

You can really never invest too much energy in learning about your customers, because the more you invest the better your products will be, the better you can serve your market, and the more sales you will make.

And now that you’ve finished reading this blog post, I highly recommend you go and create a post-purchase survey today.

We use Survey Monkey, and they make it super easy.

P.S. I’ve included these questions as an easy way to add value to your business, so for your customers’ sake please, please copy them.

Video Highlights
0:17 The Shopify Plus Merchant Success Team
0:51 Merchant Empathy and Relationships
1:45 Post Purchase Surveys
2:36 Understand the Experience of the People you’re Serving
3:28 The Skill Set of Mastery
4:18 Shopify Cares about Who they Serve

Click Here For Video Transcript

Hey, Ezra here behind the scenes at Shopify in Ottawa, Canada. They actually asked me to fly up here and speak to the merchant success teams. So there’s this group of employees…Shopify has, like, 2,500 employees, and about 80 of them are on the merchant success team for Shopify Plus, which is the bigger brands on Shopify, the brands that are doing more volume and need a little bit more support, and a little bit more sort of infrastructure and different things in the technology. They pay a little extra to be a part of this thing called Shopify Plus.

Now, my store, BOOM! by Cindy Joseph, is on Shopify Plus, and they’re doing this whole summit, it’s like mostly virtual workers who are on this team of merchant success. And so, they’ve brought them all together to hang out, which I think is a great idea. I have a virtual company, so bringing your people together, giving them the chance to sort of hang out with one another is really a good thing to do. And they asked me to come up and speak on merchant empathy and relationships. So basically, giving them some insight to what it’s like to be us, what it’s like to be a merchant, what it’s like to be someone who they are serving. Essentially, Shopfiy’s agenda is to have their customer support people understand the experience of the people they are serving, and it’s such an important thing to really know your customers. To really know what they’re going through, who they are as people, what their lives look like, what challenges they have in relationship to how they’re doing business with themselves. I think it’s really smart on Shopify’s part to bring people like me up and have us talk to the folks who are supporting us kind of about what our experience is as entrepreneurs, as merchants.

Shopify essentially invested in flying me out and some other speakers out to have their people understand the experience of the folks that they are serving, and I think it’s super important. One of the things that we do in our business is we send out post-purchase surveys. So anyone who buys from us gets a survey that says, “Hey, how did you find us? Are there any other products you’d like us to create? Did you have any trouble buying from us?” Or “Is there anything we should know?” And these surveys, they’re not multiple choice, we just let people write and put comment boxes. And then, if you order twice, you get a special second-time customer survey. Because we really want to build our business around our sort of better buyers and people who really love our brand. We want to know what they want, so they get their own special survey.

And the insight that we get from these surveys is incredible. We find out new products that we should create. We find out things that were hiccups in the buying process. We find out really interesting stuff by letting our customers tell us about their experience. So I highly recommend that you do a post-purchase survey at the very least, but that you endeavor to kind of understand the experience of the people that you’re serving. Because the more that you kind of know who they are and what they’re up to, the better that you can serve them.

And you know, my tagline is “Serve the world unselfishly and profit,” because I feel like the only way that you could really profit is if you’re actually in a role of service. And to be the best at being in a role of service, understanding who you’re serving better than anyone else will give you that upper hand. So it was a super fun event, I really enjoyed it. There was a guy named Bob…I was onstage and I was saying, “Hey, I think that there’s 80 of you, right? And you guys support us, merchants. So what if each one of you mastered one sort of area of eCommerce?” You really just mastered that. Like, “You were the pictures person, and you were the Facebook person,” and you kind of…just each person has their own special skill set where they spend…because you know, my viewpoint is that the skill set that you want in your life is the skill set of mastery. Which is simply the willingness to put your attention in one area consistently over time. And if you pick up an instrument every day for 30 minutes, you get better at it.

So I was saying, “Hey, you guys should each master a skill set.” And I said, “Hey, is there anyone…” for example, “You guys, there must be a Bob on this team.” And then the whole room broke out in a chant, “Bob Starr, Bob Starr.” So apparently, there was something I didn’t know about this guy Bob. Because as soon as I brought him…I didn’t even know if there was a Bob, but it turns out there was. Everyone started chanting, it was like a tribal thing. And I later found out that Bob is like one of the favorite employees, everyone loves him. It kind of like was a whole thing throughout the day. We were sort of teasing Bob.

But anyways, I don’t know why I’m telling you about Bob. The plus side, it was really good. I hope you enjoyed kind of taking a little bit of a look in what it was like. And kind of what I took away and was impressed by how much Shopify cares about really understanding who they’re serving. And I think it’s just brilliant. I think there’s not too much that you can invest in that. Because the more that you invest in that, the better your product is. So we can all learn from Shopify.

Ezra here. Thanks for checking this video out. Catch you in the next one.

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