Instant Feedback – Why did you come to our website today?

Visitors to the lu.se domain have been asked, over the last month, what they thought of the english webpages of Lund University.  In answer to the question ‘Could you do what you wanted?’ approximately 70% answered ‘yes’.
As we continue to gather more results, it will become an additional means of measuring our website’s performance.
How  much time did I invest into this? I reckon about an hour to set it up. I used Questback, a smart piece of survey software which enables a relatively quick preparation of questionnaires.
Using google analytics I identified the top ten most visited webpages of the english pages in the lu.se domain and then stuck a link on these pages. No popup, just a link embedded in a picture.  This links to a very simple questionnaire which asks these three questions:-

 - Why did you come to our website today?

- Could you do what you wanted?´

- If you could not do what you wanted, why not?

66 % of these 200 visitors who answered the questionnaire wanted to check what courses and programmes we offer. Most were able to do what they wanted. The final question enables the visitors to leave a message and about half of them have done so. Almost all the comments are useful in some way, and all of them are the voice of the customer which we would otherwise not have heard. 

Now here’s the thing; the pages which the link is on have attracted, between them, something like 50 000 visitors in the last month so these 200 visitors represent just 0,4% of the traffic these pages experienced. Also, the data is likely skewed by the particular characteristics of people who are more likely to fill in such surveys. I suspect that if I were to be a little less conservative with where the link is placed, or used a pop up survey tool, then we could probably raise this to a 1-2 % response rate.

You certainly don’t want to make a strategic decision solely on the basis of this information but, in combination with usability studies, analysis of the web statistics and email surveys it helps build a powerful picture of the user’s experience on our websites – and enables us to measure their success or failure.