One of the most desired outcomes of a survey strategy is the response rate. You can design the best survey for your users or customers, but it’s useful only if the most number of people respond to it the right way.
The higher percentage of responses you collect on your survey, the more reliable your data is. Therefore it is important to maximize your sample size by increasing the number of responses.
Response rate depends upon several factors, such as:
- Length of your survey
- Survey Questions Types
- Sample size
- Timing – when the survey is sent to the target audience.
Now the question remains… Is there a best time to send it?
Is there any statistical evidence that can predict the optimal survey sending time, or can you send them at any time out there, expecting people to get around to respond to it?
In this blog, we will try to find out the best time to send out surveys and corroborate the conclusions with various supporting studies and research available out there.
Is It Worth the Effort to Find the Best Time to Send Surveys?
Before we dive into the statistics, let’s look at some of the reasons behind the need to find the sweet spot for survey delivery:
Your Mail Is Like a Needle in the Haystack for the Customers
Your Mail Is Like a Needle in the Haystack for the Customers
According to recent statistics, there are over 3.9 billion email users on the planet, and the daily mail volume for 2020 was 306.4 billion emails worldwide.
Taking even a very crude ratio of daily emails per user shows us that every user sends and receives approximately 73 mails in a single day.
That’s why, finding the optimal time to send your surveys can land you on top of the pile so you can increase the chances of response from your audience.
Higher Response Rate Means More Reliable Data
Response rates matter because they increase the sample size of your surveys. The larger the sample size, the higher the probability that the feedback is accurate and represents your audience’s consensus. It helps you separate the true voice of your customers from the data outliers so you can stay on track to make improvements.
With accurate and reliable data, you can make the necessary changes, fix issues quickly, and provide a better customer experience to increase conversions.
Is It Worth the Effort?
Let’s do the math. Suppose that by monitoring the optimal time to send the email surveys, you can increase the click-through rate (CTR) from 2% to 2.25%. It means an increase of 0.25 (12.5%), which is a substantial jump in the numbers of people replying to your surveys.
Therefore, it is crucial to find the precise moments to deliver your surveys to increase customer engagement and revenue.
Before We Start…
- a. There are a number of factors that may affect the optimal sending time of your survey campaign, such as:
- Target audience
- Your Industry
- Target location
- Sudden changes in customer behavior depending on holiday seasons, discounts, coupons, etc.
- We have considered both; email invite and survey invite studies for this blog. The general trends observed in the email campaign reports are the same for survey invitations, even if the data is not.
- The reports do not differentiate between the types of surveys, so depending upon the type, you may experience slightly different results (as depicted by Zendesk Report).
- The best way to use these studies is to compare the results with what you are experiencing at your end. If you are new to survey campaigns, you can use them as a starting point and build your hypothesis with the data you receive from your campaigns.
Now let’s dive into the details on the best time to send the survey invites.
Best Days of the Week to Send out Your Surveys
|Takeaways:||The Best Days To send Surveys are:Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday.|
The report by Mailchimp plots the best time to send mail invites as a function of engagement and volume. It presents the optimal time by calculating the percentage of respondents engaging with the mails at the given time. So the percentages would add up to 100% along the time axis.
The graphs below track the percentage of respondents that have a particular time as their optimum.
On a high-level view, we can easily see from the graph that the optimal time to send is during the weekdays. The chart reaches its maxima at 18% on Thursday. Tuesday is next in line as the optimal time for about 17% of the total population.
Looking closely, we see that the distribution is quite similar from Monday to Friday in terms of the percentage of subscribers who have that day as the optimal for mail invites. However, a significant drop is seen on the weekends, i.e., Saturday and Sunday.
In the benchmark study report by Experian, they calculated the best day of the week for mail deployment by considering the percentage of emails sent each day compared to the total weekly mail volume.
We see that the highest unique open rate (OR) of 18.3% is observed on Saturday. It is followed by Tuesday and Sunday at 17.9% and 17.5% respectively. Moreover, the click-through rate (CTR) on three days is 2.5%, 2.5%, and 2.7%, respectively.
What’s more, considering the mail volume for each day of the week, we see 16% of the total weekly emails were sent on Tuesday, while Saturday accounts for 12%.
So, the best days for mail deployment turn out to be Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday.
CheckMarket’s survey completion report goes a level deeper than the others. They segmented the audience into B2B and B2C. Then, they divided the survey types into long and short surveys to see the best time to get higher completion rates for each element.
For B2B Surveys
We see that the highest completion rate for shorter surveys is observed on Monday (18%).
However, the completion rates for long surveys are quite similar throughout the week, with the maximum rate on Monday(12%) followed by Wednesday(11%).
For B2C Surveys
For short B2C surveys, Tuesday shows the maximum completion rate of 16%, followed by Wednesday (13%) and Sunday (13%). For long surveys, Friday and Wednesday are the best days to send survey invites.
GetResponse analyzed over 2.85 million emails sent to their customer base in the first quarter of 2020. They noted the OR, CTR, and click-to-open rate (CTOR) to find the best times to send email invites for different locations.
The global breakdown shows that the CTR is relatively consistent throughout the weekdays, with a net difference of 0.3% between Tuesday (maximum) and Thursday (minimum).
The highest Opening Rate – OR (20.58%) is seen on Friday, with a CTR of 2.31%. On Monday and Tuesday, the ORs were 20.43% and 20.3%, respectively. The corresponding CTRs on these days were 2.32% and 2.33%, respectively.
Keep in mind that the difference in the percentage of messages sent between these days is just over 1.5%. We can conclude the best days to send the invites are Monday, Tuesday, and Friday.
From the chart, we see that the response rate during the weekdays is quite similar, as the difference between the maxima and minima is just 2%.
The peak occurs at 20% on Monday. Looking at the survey volume, we see that Monday is closely followed by Wednesday at 19%.
According to the data, the best days to send the surveys are Monday, Wednesday, and Sunday.
Email Surveys work when you have the recipients’ email addresses. So, why restrict your reach?
You can easily overcome this limitation and instantly increase your sample size by using on-site and in-app surveys to maximize the response rate.
It also lets you collect more nuanced in-the-moment user insights which are 10x more valuable than email surveys.
Best Time of the Day to Send out Your Surveys
Let us now try to narrow it down from the best days of the week to the best time of the day to send survey invites to your audience.
|Takeaways:||The best times of day to send surveys are: 4.00 am to 6.00 am10.00 am to 1.00 pm8.00 pm to 12.00 am|
Looking at Mailchimp’s report again, the graph below depicts the percentage of subscribers who see that particular time of the day as their optimal time to receive the mail invites.
We observe that 9.00 am- 2.00 pm is the subscribers’ optimal time for email invites, with the peak occurring at 10.00 am. We can also see that it starts to taper down during later hours of the day. So we can say that the best time of the day in this study is 9.00 am- 2.00 pm.
The same study by Experian divides the total daily mail volume into six time-slots to show the best time for sending mail invites.
We see that the highest OR and CTR are observed between 8.00 pm -12.00 am at 22.7%, but the total emails sent at these hours were only 3% of the daily volume, which can be a possible reason for higher OR and CTR.
Another important thing to note is that around 35% of the total daily volume of emails are sent between 8.00 am – 12.00 pm, and the respective OR and CTR were 17.3% and 2.3%.
Considering the number of emails sent and CTR, we can see that the best times to send the invites are 8.00 pm to 12.00 am and 8.00 am to 12.00 pm.
Now, let us look at CheckMarket’s report to find the best time of the day to send survey invites.
For B2B Surveys
The best time to send B2B surveys comes out to be between 3 pm to 6 pm as it shows relatively higher completion rates the entire week.
For B2C surveys
For B2C surveys, the best sending time can be seen between 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm, with Monday being the exception. It is followed by the time slot between 3.00 pm – 6.00 pm showing a higher survey completion rate than the remaining time slots for the entire week.
The global breakdown chart of the GetResponse’s report for the best time of the day to send email invites shows that the highest OR of 22.05% was reported at 4.00 am while the highest CTR of 3.24% was seen at 6.00 am.
So does it mean that the best times are 4.00 am and 6.00 am? Not necessarily.
When we look at the percentage of emails sent at these times, we see they are relatively low, 1.5% and 3.95%, respectively.
As we move along the time axis, we observe that the next maxima for OR (21.73%) occurs at 10.00 am, and the number of sent emails increases to 7.77%. It also shows a higher CTR (2.73%) than the 4.00 am slot. Similar data points are observed for 9.00 am, and 11.00 am.
Looking at the entire picture, we can say the best times to send the email for maximum OR and CTR are 9.00 am to 11.00 am, and 6.00 am.
Let’s view the study by Zendesk again to find the best hour of the day to send surveys.
Breaking down the graph’s readings, we see that the response rates are highest between 1.00 am to 6.00 am. The peak occurs at 4.00 am. The response rates are relatively lower during the day, but they start to climb after 8.00 pm.
The reason for such behavior can be that the emails are more likely to get lost in other work emails during working hours. So the best time to send the surveys is between 1.00 am to 5.00 am.
You can use Yesware’s free tool to know the best time to send email invites in your target city to get a higher response rate >>> https://www.yesware.com/best-time-to-send/.
What Are the Best Times to Post Surveys on Social Media
Apart from sending surveys through emails, you can also collect valuable information from your customer base via social media. Around 3.81 billion people use social media worldwide. Therefore, it is important to include this section in this blog.
Social media channels have become the fronts for brands to engage, promote, and convert their audience. If you are using social platforms, it is imperative to know when to deploy your posts to get maximum visibility.
In this section, we will use the studies by Sproutsocial and Hootsuite to find the optimal time for your posts on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, and Instagram.
Hootsuite compiled the data from 300 brands on social media and divided it into B2B and B2C businesses to calculate the optimal posting time for each segment. On the other hand, Sproutsocial collated the information on their 20000+ customer base to understand their engagement on various platforms.
Best Time – Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday around 11.00 am – 2.00 pm
From the study by Sproutsocial, we see that the best time to post on Facebook is on Wednesday between 11.00 am – 2.00 pm and Friday at 11.00 am.
Going over Hootsuite’s report, we see that for B2B brands, the best days to post on Facebook are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. The best time to post on Facebook comes out to be 11.00 am – 2.00 pm. For B2C brands, the best time comes out to be around 12.00 pm on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Best Time – Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday between 11.00 am – 1.00 pm.
Looking at Sproutsocial, the chart shows the maximum engagement is observed on Sunday at around 11.00 am and Wednesday at around 1.00 pm.
The Hootsuite study shows that the peak engagement for B2B brands is seen on Monday and Thursday between 9.00 am to 4.00 pm. For B2C brands, the optimal time comes out to be between Monday to Wednesday, 11.00 am -1.00 pm.
Best Time – Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday between 12.00 pm – 1.00 pm
Instagram boasts a total of 1 billion users, so timing your posts can land a lot of traffic, influencers, and customers in your business.
According to Sproutsocial, the best days to post on Instagram are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday between 11.00 am – 3.00 pm.
As per the Hootsuite study, the optimum time to get maximum engagement on Instagram is Monday through Friday, 12.00 pm-1.00 pm.
Best Time – Monday through Friday between 8.00 am – 2.00 pm.
Unlike other social media platforms, Linkedin focuses on professional users. Therefore it houses a more specific target audience than other platforms.
Sproutsocial’s data indicates that the best times to post on Linkedin are on Wednesday between 8.00 am-12.00 pm, Thursday at 9.00 am and 1.00 pm – 2.00 pm, and Friday at around 9.00 am.
According to Hootsuite, the optimal days are Monday, Wednesday, and Tuesday. The data for the best time of the day was not available in their study.
To understand the optimal time to send surveys to your audience, you need to understand them. Begin by asking these questions:
- Who is the target audience for that particular survey?
- What are their possible states at different times of the day?
- When do they have a free moment to be interested in the promotional material in their mailbox?
- And what can you offer in exchange for their valuable time?
Watch: Steps to building effective surveys
Find out What Works for Your Business
As seen from the above reports, the data can get a little scattered as we go deeper into each segment, such as type of audience, type of surveys, time of the year, etc.
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