Whether conducting marketing research or getting customer feedback, surveys are vital to small businesses. Surveys can help a small business identify its strengths and weaknesses, and they also provide great ideas for new marketing promotions. However, where does a small business owner find survey tools that are both effective and affordable?

Below are three types of survey tools currently available for either low cost or free. Most are easy to use. It’s important to research the pros and cons of each survey tool to evaluate which suits your business needs best.

 
Online Survey Tools

Most small business owners have likely heard of SurveyMonkey. It’s among the most well-known, online survey tools available. It has a free option available with limited functions, as well as other various paid options at different monthly prices, which have more functionality. However, SurveyMonkey is not the only online survey tool on the market. Three noteworthy alternatives suitable for small businesses are KwikSurveys, SurveyGizmo, and SogoSurvey. Each of these three also offers free tools with limited features, as well as paid options with expanded offerings.

 
Google Docs

Google has creative multiple solutions for entrepreneurs and small business owners, essentially an online ecosystem of sights, apps and communication tools. Google Docs is free and a great option, around which small business owners can organize their schedules, contacts and even finances. Since document sharing is a key component of Google Docs offerings, it stands to reason that it would also make an online survey tool as well. It has many functionality options and can be easily embedded into websites, where the data can then be easily converted into charts for processing and analysis. While it’s easy to set up, unfortunately, it isn’t as straightforward as other online survey tools, so it may take more time to figure out than other options.

 
Survey Plugins on Content Management Systems

In today’s technology-driven world, it’s almost mandatory for a small business to have their own website. It makes sense that a small business would want to use its website to build and share their surveys. Luckily, a majority of the larger website content management systems (CMS) offer them. For instance, the biggest and most popular CMS, WordPress, offers tons of plugins for adding surveys to your website. Many of these plugins are actually free, which make them perfect for any small business budget. The biggest drawback in using these plugins is the amount of time one has to invest to determine the best plugin for your purpose, and then setting it up. Most are very easy to use once you have them up and running.

 
 
This article was written by Suzy Fielders for Small Business Pulse

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