How one survey question led to 106.59% increase in revenue

By Emils Veveris

There’s no secret that more than 90% of people who visit your site won’t convert into customers.

Most business owners, and startup founders have plenty of ideas on what to do about it. I mean you only need to Google ‘convert more visitors’ or ‘growth hacks’ and you’ll get plenty of ideas.

But how do you know which ones will work for you?

There are no guarantees that what worked for others will work for you. The odds are probably against you.

You have a different target audience, industry, position, pricing, etc.

In other words, you are dealing with different people that may react very… differently.

If you follow these ideas and best practices you are simply shooting in the dark and hoping to hit something.

Which opens a lot of room for error, risk and lost time.

To avoid this, at first, you need to go to the most reliable source there is - your visitors, users and customers.

You’ve probably heard this before and already know how important it is to talk to your customers, for example by using surveys, polls, interviews, etc.

But most businesses fail here by asking the wrong questions at the wrong time (or even worse, by not asking anything at all).

And that leads to answers you don’t really know what to do with (or no answers).

You want to know why the majority of your visitors are not buying from you - what are the main obstacles.

You want to understand what’s happening in their minds, while they are browsing your site and are in the process of making the decision about whether it’s worth becoming your customer.

What fears, doubts, questions they have.

Once you know this information, it will dramatically increase your chances of converting more of your visitors into customers and thus grow your business faster.

You’ll have a better sense of what potential solutions and ideas will work best in your case, based on data and real insights, not just guesswork.

How do you find that out? A very simple trick…

Ask this question:

What’s the one thing that nearly stopped you from signing up/buying from us?

And ask it right after they signed up.

Because all the doubt, fear, and questions when using your website are still fresh in their minds at this point. If you ask them later there’s a high chance they’ve already forgotten.

Or, if you sell physical products or run an ecommerce store, ask the first time customers, who have never bought from you before.

Because those who are repeat purchasers can be immune to any issues your store may have, as they are now in familiar territory (after all, they’ve bought from you before and know what to do).

I learned this trick from Peep Laja and his ResearchXL framework. Check it out if you want to learn more in- depth ways to find actionable insights about your users, website and business.

Case study: helps law students gain a better understanding of the law by explaining legalese in plain English.

I asked the question above to their new members right after they signed up and I found out that the majority of them weren’t sure if it’s worth paying for the membership.

Because they are students, after all, money is tight, they don’t want to pay for another study aid and you can find similar material for free elsewhere.

Quimbee’s material is much higher quality, and users find it much more useful and effective than the free stuff.

But most of the visitors weren’t so sure about this until they tried it.

Although there was a money back guarantee it still caused a lot of resistance. I noticed that many users said that they weren’t sure how the guarantee actually worked.

So I suggested offering the visitors a free trial instead.

And here’s what happened in 5 weeks after we implemented it:

That’s a 168.02% increase in conversion rate.

Of course, not everyone stayed as a customer but the majority did, and the overall improvement in revenue was 106.59%.

Sure, this isn’t anything revolutionary. I mean offering a free trial is a ‘best practice’ for a membership site or SaaS. And it was already on the companies to do list but it was buried amongst other ideas.

This simple survey revealed what to focus on.

How can you apply it?

The most effective way to do this is to set up a pop-up on your ‘thank you’ page with an invitation to participate in a quick survey.

Two tools that make it very easy to do it - Hotjar and Qualaroo (I used Hotjar in this particular case).

Aren’t pop-ups annoying? They are, but the information is worthwhile and it’s not like people spend that much time on the thank you pages, so you’re not really inconveniencing them.

Bonus tip:

You can ask more questions (and you should), but make sure you also offer them an incentive to do it (like a coupon or a gift card), otherwise no one will want to participate.

Other useful questions you can use:

What’s your biggest frustration with [problem your service/product is solving]? Let them describe the pain in their owns very useful for creating a compelling value proposition.

What ultimately convinced you to sign up? You want to know what’s already working for you and double down on it.

After you have collected enough answers (100-300 depending on your business) start looking for recurring patterns - words, issues, questions.

This will give a better sense of who your customers are and how can you convince more of them to convert.

Emils Veveris

P.S. Let me know if this case study is helpful in the comments. Questions? I’ll do my best to answer every single one.

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P.P.P.S. If you’re interested in improving conversions for your site, you should get in touch.