The 5 demographic questions every survey should ask
By Letizia Zappa
Demographic questions can help you quickly understand your target customers and better reach them. Discover the 5 demographic questions you should be asking in your survey here.
Demographic questions are key to better understand customers. Why is that? Today customers expect personalised experiences. They expect companies to really understand them and promptly respond to their needs. That is why knowing your customers is key to success: only by understanding really well who they are and what their needs are, only then you can better help them with your products and services.
This is where demographic questions come in handy. These questions are usually asked in surveys and they allow you to collect information in bulk about your customers’ demographics.
Why demographic questions are important
No matter your business and the industry you are working with, knowing the demographics traits of your customers must be one of your priorities. Demographic data are defined as socio-economic information expressed statistically, also including employment, education, income and more factors. You can understand why demographic questions are important: they can provide you with general background information on your target prospects or existing customers. This knowledge is what enables you to better shape your value proposition and your marketing strategy as, by knowing more about your audience, you can reach them better.
The 5 most important demographic questions
Sociodemographic questions can be many and depending on your needs you will find that some traits mean more than others to you. Anyway, we have created a list of the most important demographic questions that in most cases can help you get an overview of your customer.
Age is a standard demographic question that should be included in any survey. You will always want to know how old the participants are and whether they fit the segment you want to target. A good way to ask this question is with an open-end question. In many cases, you want to know the specific age of the participants.
Often as important or even more important than age, gender is one of the vital demographic questions. Again, gender is very often a segmentation parameter you probably use to identify your target segments.
Perhaps you are also interested in knowing where your users are from. Then you should ask participants to share their location. You may learn that your website and app have a broad international audience and discover there is some untapped potential in some countries.
A common way to ask this demographic question is “ In which country do you live?”; since there are many possible answers, location demographic questions usually present drop-down menu as the answer option.
In case you’re doing business locally, it can also be good to ask the participants for their zip codes. This way you will be able to identify the most valuable areas with a single demographic question.
Yet another core demographic question, education allows you to better understand your audience. Depending on your website and app, this knowledge can make a huge difference. Are your users MBA holders? Are they young school dropouts?
Education demographic questions ask the participants what is the highest level of education they have attained.
Finally, asking your users about their current employment status can be a good way to get an idea of their buying power and interests. You can also add another demographic question after this one and ask your users what is their yearly income if you want to have a more specific idea of how much they’re earning.
Why you should use surveys
By asking demographic questions in surveys, you can collect characteristics of your current and potential customers at scale.
Demographic questions are then the very basis of market segmentation. By asking the right questions you can better understand your customers and then develop more effective marketing strategies.
Also, by making good use of the demographic questions you’ve asked, you can modify your current offerings and create features or products that better suit your customers’ needs.
By collecting demographic data through surveys, you’ll gain enough insights and will be able to create “customer personas”, semi-fictional profiles of your targeted customers that act as guidelines, you can read more about this in here.
How to ask demographic questions in a survey
We have listed here some best practices to help you understand how to use surveys to ask demographic questions, hopefully, they will help you better structure your work.
Make the survey accessible
Nowadays, it is easy to reach a large number of people through online channels. Implementing a survey on your company’s website or app can be a very effective way to reach users.
If you are using UserReport, you can easily integrate the survey on your online channels, the tools also comes with built-in demographic questions ready to be activated on your survey.
Anonymize the survey
It is good practice to never ask the name of participants in surveys. Remember that surveys are not a means to gather leads, they are a tool to better understand your market. Rember to let your users know their data will be anonymized.
Make it easy and fun
Your survey should be easy to fill out – try to avoid open-ended questions as much as you can and try to limit the number of questions.
To make the process more pleasant for users, you can choose to show users how other people answered the same question before them. It is a small addition but it makes the survey more entertaining. Also, as an incentivize you can invite users to participate in a prize draw, so they will be more motivated to fill in the survey.
Create your survey
With our free tool UserReport, you can create online surveys on your website and app. You will be able to choose between buil-in standard questions and your own.
Once you’ve created a free account, you will need to add some basic information about your website or app. You will then get a small piece of code which should be implemented on your website or app. Once the survey is activated, you will be able to access the results you’ve collected in the reporting interface.
Try out UserReport and start asking your users demographic questions today!