If you have ever read any of our blogs in the past, there’s roughly a 50% chance that it has a survey that we conducted, and we use Mechanical Turk for our surveys (MicroWorkers is another great tool). Asking peers, especially consistently, is both tedious for them, and also tends to rely on too-small sample sizes. Conducting surveys has been an easy, inexpensive (10 cents or cheaper in some instances), and insightful way to make educated decisions. Some of the takeaways from surveys have been game-changers as well.
Amazon Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is a crowdsourcing marketplace that makes it easier for individuals and businesses to outsource their processes and jobs to a distributed workforce who can perform these tasks virtually. This description on their website gets surprisingly (or not) complicated, but imagine it is a place where tens of thousands of people are waiting eagerly to answer any of your questions.
While most surveys are “quick opinions,” they can range in input. Whether your homepage has the right tone, a picture of your building or your team is more welcoming, and if your marketing campaign is going in front of the right demographic or age range are all examples of input you could receive from a survey. We’ll take a look at some ideas on how surveys and feedback sessions can help you make the right decisions for your website and for your marketing.
In each area, I will give examples of what kinds of questions we will weigh (for a more involved survey, you can also have respondents reply with what they believe would be a good way of approaching it in a text response). Most answers are typically “On a scale from 1-10” or “YES/NO”. Sometimes multiple choice and “strongly disagree/agree” comes into play.
For Your Website
The following are the kinds of feedback you can get during a survey conducted concerning your website.
Call to Actions
- Weighing in what the value proposition should be (“free consultation/free case review”)
- Call to action being featured towards the top, middle, or end of page
- Consistent, or stick Call to Action, in the header, footer, or a sidebar
- Including expertise within the CTA (years of experience, hundreds helped, recovered over $1 billion dollars)
- Links to a contact page creating another part of the journey, or a link directly to a pop-up form or a Calendly link
- Leading content anecdotally
- A serious or more caring and nurturing tone
- Easier to digest content with more/less bullet points, sub-sections, shorter paragraphs, etc.
- Asking about readability via desktop, tablet, and mobile, and suggesting edits to font style, font size, and font color
- Hero image/slider images preferences and why (ex: picture of partners, picture of partners with team, picture of interior of office, picture of exterior of office, or picture of the cityscape)
- Preference in images being featured for individual pages
- Emotions elicited from any stock imagery being used
Forms of Communication/Contact
- Gauging visitor preference of contact: Email, SMS, Chat, Contact Form, Phone, Immediate Video Consult
- Comparing two chat services
- Surveying questions asked during the intake process
- Surveying the step-by-step process that occurs when a potential client submits their contact info (ex: When you submit your information 1) our lawyers review your case 2) you speak with a lawyer to discuss their approach 3) if you feel like our firm is a good fit, you retain us)
Comparison of Competition
- Have respondents visit several of your largest perceived competitors and give a short list of three features/aspects of their website they liked that aren’t currently on your website
- Compare site load speeds
- Compare user experience on mobile devices
- Compare pages perceived to be useful
- Compare basically anything you can think of
For Your Marketing
Improving Meta Titles/Descriptions
The great thing about a great meta description is being able to get solid click-thrus even if you aren’t in the top 3 organic results. There is a unique approach to generating a test SERP (Search Engine Results Page) and making minor manipulations for testing.
This has been a great tool for moving around SERPs for testing and then seeing how respondents still interact with the finished result. This is definitely my go to for truly knowing if I am making the most out of important page meta descriptions.
Sometimes it takes a little sleuth power of some respondents with a few minutes on their hands to uncover things you may have either missed or downplayed about your brand or business online. While you may be able to find a 1-star review online with relative ease, perhaps some feedback about an incomplete profile or listing, a review that is actually more abrasive than positive even at 4-stars, or a random unsavory image could prove to be worth addressing.
Comparing Ad Copy
In some instances, doing a quick survey before launching ad sets could save you some money over running ads for a couple of weeks before knowing which have a higher click-thru and/or conversion rate.
- A/B Testing Google Ad copy with respondents, in addition to its CTR consideration
- Copy, call to action, and button text on Facebook
Comparing Ad Design
Similarly, preemptively testing some of the imagery, call to actions, and color schemes for the aesthetic part of ads.
Suggesting Usability on Legal Directories
Ever have a rep ensure you that the “Silver” position still gets clicks even though it is significantly lower than Platinum and Gold? Run a survey to see if most respondents would genuinely click on some hypothetical positions within paid portions of directories.
In addition, you can see what directory profiles may be the most appealing. Ask about which profile pictures, vanity numbers and urls, excerpts (20 years’ experience!) work best, and why.
Suggesting Interaction with Certain SERPs
Depending on your main keywords and your industry, different SERPs may be appealing to different people, and include a huge array of results like:
- Paid ads
- Organic maps
- Paid map listings
- Business website results
- Directory results
- Blog results
- Article results
- And many more, including all sorts of augmentations from structured data
A survey on the most appealing results in that particular SERP may give you more insight into what to work more closely towards.
General Behavioral Inquiries
Even with these examples, we’ve probably uncovered only 1% of how Mechanical Turk and other similar services work. What we are doing is getting more guidance on confirming our expertise and also our gut instinct. We may feel good about a lot of our marketing and design decisions, but you also shouldn’t be opposed to throwing $20-30 dollars at confirming! Hard data is better than no data, and marketing advice seems especially based on basically nothing nowadays.
Criteria for Survey Takers
We don’t necessary want to just survey ANYONE right? Our initial requirements are that:
- Their approval rate from all requesters is greater than 90%
- They have had at least 50 tasks approved in the past
This is just a small way to make sure we’re going to get far more people that will do this appropriately. Adding other criteria may increase the cost, but you’ll be more aligned with who you’re looking for. Other examples that stand out are as follows, but are not nearly limited to:
- Age brackets
- Employment industry
- Education level
- Employment status
- How they prefer receiving their news
- Household income
- Marital status
- Recent online purchases
- My Favorite: Handedness – Left
Surveys We’ve Compiled Over the Years
Since I mentioned in the beginning that we’ve done MANY surveys over the years, I thought I’d share a big chunk of them and give you the main goals for each of them. Think of it as inspiration for doing your first survey, if there wasn’t enough yet.
What We Learned About Handling Negative Reviews
- How important is it to respond to negative reviews? 1-10 Scale
- How important is it to respond to positive reviews? 1-10 Scale
- How likely is it you go straight to a negative review on a profile? 1-10 Scale
- Is a 4.6 about as equal to a 5.0 because businesses naturally can’t make everyone happy? 1-10 Scale
- How should a business be responding to negative reviews? Multiple Choice
What You Can’t Afford to Exclude in Your Legal Landing Page
- What is the most important information you are looking for on this page? What missing information could impact your choice to avoid contacting the lawyer. Multiple Choice
- Out of the following forms of communication featured on the page (a chat window, an email address, a phone number, and a contact form), which is your preferred method to get in touch with the attorney? Multiple Choice
- How many seconds of loading do you consider to be too long, and which might make you leave the page before it loads? Numerical Input
More People are Listening to Podcasts in 2020
- Are Podcasts Your Preferred Medium for Getting Information? Yes/No
- How Much More/Less Do You Plan on Engaging With Podcasts in 2020? 1-5 Scale
- On a scale from 1-10, how do you perceive the quality of the content on podcasts?
- On a scale from 1-10, how important is the audio quality of the podcast itself?
How Important are Vanity Features on Your Website?
- Importance of testimonials, case results, review badges, and awards on several different sites and then rate their importance on a scale from 1-10
Staggering Facts About Your Word-of-Mouth Referrals
- Do you ever ask friends and family for referrals for professional services? Yes/No
- If you do, how likely are you to still do research on that professional service afterward? 1-10 Scale
- What website or online source seems to have the most trustworthy and credible reviews? Open Answer
- What website or online sources seem to have the most potentially fake or untrustworthy reviews? Open Answer
How Do People Find Lawyers in 2019?
- If you were involved in a car accident and wanted to get in touch with a lawyer afterward, how would you go about doing that. Open Answer
The Continued Importance of Reviews in 2019
- On a scale from 1-10, how important would it be to read reviews about a LAWYER prior to contacting them?
- What is the minimum rating you would want to see for a lawyer on Google? (0.0-5.0, including decimals)
- What is the minimum numbers of reviews you would want to see for a lawyer on Google? Numerical Input
- On a scale from 1-10, if you narrowed down two lawyers you liked but one had MUCH better reviews online, how much would that impact your final decision?
Are People Reading Reviews Before Contacting Lawyers?
- On a scale from 1-10, how important would it be to read reviews about a lawyer prior to contacting them?
- What websites come to mind when finding reviews about a lawyer? Open Answer
- On a scale from 1-10, if you narrowed your choices down two lawyers you liked but one had much better reviews online, how much would that impact your final decision?
How Important are Website Chat Functions in 2019?
- Which chat arrangement do you prefer? Choose Between Two
- On a scale from 1-10, how intrusive/off-putting is chat one?
- On a scale from 1-10, how intrusive/off-putting is chat two?
- How likely are you to use chat when featured on a website? 1-10 Scale
- How important is it to you knowing the chat has a live person speaking with you? 1-10 Scale
How People Evaluate Text Content Online
- What issues with a webpage would cause you to leave a website? Multiple Choice
- On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being “often” and 1 being “never,” how often do you stay on a page with no formatting but significant information?
- On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the strongest, how strongly do you agree with the statement: “A web page’s design and the length of content on it affect my perception of the company as a trustworthy source on the subject.”
- On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the strongest, how strongly do you agree with the following statement: “Images and infographics make it easier for me to digest the information I find online.”
- On a scale from 1-10, with 10 being the strongest, how strongly do you agree with the following statement: “Web pages with insufficient content and a lack of formatting make me think that the website is not knowledgeable about the subject.”
Expanding Upon How People Research a Company Before Contacting Them
- How important are others’ opinions about a company? 1-10 Scale
- How trustworthy do you find reviews on the following websites? 1-10 Scale
- How many websites would you visit before finding all the information you need to decide on contacting? Numerical Value
Why Different Content Formats Matter in 2019
- On a scale from 1-10, how much more likely are you to go with a professional that offers great information in the formats previously mentioned on their website?
- On a scale from 1-10, how much more trustworthy do you perceive a person to be with information on their site in the formats previously mentioned?
- On a scale from 1-10, if you narrowed down two professionals you liked but one had more helpful information in the form of e-books or videos on their site, how much would that impact your final decision?
Social Search Trends to Anticipate in 2019
- Do you plan on using this platform more or less often in 2019, and do you plan on seeking local services or products through this channel?
- What specific social network do you plan on using more frequently to discover reliable local services and/or products?
Protecting Your Law Firm’s Brand to Ensure Your Word-of-Mouth Keeps on Coming
- On a scale from 1-10, how important would it be for you to still research the lawyer even though your family and/or friends said they were a good lawyer.
- About how much time would you spend doing the research on the lawyer?
- Would a severely outdated website affect your decision to contact the lawyer?
- Would no website at all affect your decision to contact the lawyer?
- What websites are people using to find out more about the lawyer?
Should Generating Reviews be a Part of Your Marketing Strategy?
- On a scale of 1-10, how important are reviews to you when selecting the services of a local business?
- For review websites where the rating is 0.0-5.0 including fractions, what is the minimum rating someone should have to be a viable choice?
- What is the number of reviews a business should have to appear legitimate?
Are Social Media Ads the Way to Go at a Time of Social Distancing?
- How Often Have You Been on Social Media Since March 1st?
- How Often Have You Been Receiving Ads Since March 1st on Social Media?
- How Often Are You Interacting with Ads You’re Seeing on Social Media Since March 1st ?
- How Often Are You Making Purchasing Decisions from Social Media Ads Since March 1st?
- How Often Do the Ads Tend to be Using More Urgency Since March 1st?
- How Often Do You Find the Ads to be More Off-putting Than Ads You’ve Seen Prior to March 1st?
- What Social Platforms Have You Been Using More Often Since March 1st?
How do People Prefer to Receive Review Requests?
- Is it appropriate for businesses to follow up for a review after providing a product/service (if they did a good job)?
- How annoying is it receiving the request via text?
- How annoying is it receiving the request via email?
- Which method would you prefer?
- On average, how many review websites would you mind leaving the review on (if the business provided 3 options)?
What Aspects of Web Design Matter in 2019?
- Which of these three sites were most appealing to you?
- Which of these three websites looked most modern?
- Which website homepage is the most modern looking to you?
- Which website homepage is the most appealing to you?
- On a scale of one to ten, how much more qualified do you perceive the law firm with the most modern website to be compared to the others?
- How turned off are you by a website that seems too flashy or busy?
- Were any of these websites too flashy or busy?
Gauging Intent Across Marketing Channels During COVID-19 and Any Future Crisis
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), how often have you been on social media since around March 1st?
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), how much would you say the ads you’re receiving on social media have come from different businesses than they were prior to March 1st?
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), how often are you clicking through on the ads since March 1st?
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), how often have you been performing searches on Google for products/services since around March 1st?
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), are you using this time to catch up with some important personal tasks, like doing taxes, finding professional services, doing your finances, etc.?
- On a scale from 1-10, 1 being much less and 10 being much more (and 5 as neutral), how much time are you spending researching products/services before making a purchasing decision since March 1st?
- If you’ve been receiving more of a specific kind of ad lately, what industries have they been for (education, entertainment, leisure, games etc.) since March 1st?
Get our template here:
Give MTurk Surveys a Go!
Surveys can be a great way to gauge how your audience responds to features on your website or even to discover how they perceive reviews about your firm. Almost any question you have about marketing can be answered via surveys that can guide your decision making when it comes to updating your website, reaching out to the right people, and more. If you need help implementing your findings, talk to our team. We offer free digital marketing consultations here.
For Your SEO
Psst…don’t do this part. It’s against guidelines so don’t get any ideas. I didn’t necessarily see anything in the guidelines when I checked, but according to many forums, people were advising against abusing MTurk for all of the reasons below. I wanted to see for myself. Alas, it is all true. Don’t say I didn’t make real sacrifices to bring you the truth!
Positive Positioning Through CTR
Negative Positioning Through Reducing Time on Site
Easier Websites to Manipulate? (Part of their internal algorithm?)
Clicking Through Referral Links to Website?
Leaving 5 Stars, or Pre-mandated Reviews
Liking YouTube Videos (maybe even comments)
Blog Comment Link Building?