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5 min

5 steps to create and develop B2B survey questions

How to create and develop B2B survey questions in 5 simple steps

Dec 1, 2022
B2B market research


The first step in creating B2B survey questions is to set up a research objective. What do you want to learn from the audience? The second step involves outlining the information you want to know. What kinds of questions need to be asked? Then it's time to consider your audience and choose the right types of questions based on their demographics and interests. And finally, write and design good questions that are easy for people to understand.

There are 5 key steps to creating B2B survey questions

The process for creating B2B survey questions is a bit more complicated than your average question. You'll want to make sure you have a well-defined objective, outline the information you want to know, consider your audience, choose the right question types and write and design good questions.

In this article, we will cover the five key steps that make up this process: setting up a research objective; outlining the information you want to know; considering your audience; choosing the right question types; writing and designing good questions.

These steps are important because they set out how you frame your survey so that it leads respondents down a path where they can give actionable answers that help answer whatever business problem or opportunity is at hand.

Later in this article, we will also discuss B2C survey questions and what is the difference between these two terms. 

1) Set up your research objective

It’s important to set up your research objective first. The purpose of a survey is a crucial part of developing good questions. What do you want to learn? Why are you conducting this survey? What is the research question and how will it be answered?

Asking too many questions can make respondents feel overwhelmed, so keep your list short by focusing on only one area at a time. For example:

  • Is there anything else you want us to know about customer experience in our stores?
  • How often do you shop at our stores and why do or don’t you shop there more often than that amount (e.g., 3 times per month)?

If you have questions about how to write good survey questions, try reading through these tips from the Pew Research Center:

-Ask open-ended or closed questions. Closed questions are those that can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no” answer; open-ended ones allow respondents to elaborate on their answers.

-Use double barrelled questions (i.e., two related but separate questions in one). This allows you to get more information about an issue without asking twice as many questions. For example: Do you work in sales and/or sales operations?

2) Outline the information you want to know through B2B survey questions

Survey questions are the primary means of collecting information from respondents. They are an invitation for the respondent to communicate with you, and they come in various forms. The type of survey question you use depends on your research goals, who is taking the survey, what kind of data you want from them and how much time you have before conducting it.

Following are some basic guidelines for creating effective survey questions:

  • Ask closed-ended questions if your main concern is measuring respondents’ preferences or opinions about a topic. Closed-ended questions should be either multiple choice or rating scales (like Likert scales) so that there aren't many possible answers that could be misinterpreted as something else. For example: “What is the name of the organisation that you work for?” Or “Rate how often you take training at the workplace 1 = never 2 = once a year 3 = every month 4 = every week 5 = everyday 6= every day"
  • Open-ended questions allow respondents to answer freely in their own words. This makes them useful if you want qualitative data (specifically interview responses). However, they can also cause problems if people don't understand what they're being asked because there's no guidance provided by specific options as there would be with closed-ended formats.

3) Consider your audience

When you know your audience, it's easier to create questions that are relevant and meaningful for them. Consider their background and knowledge. For example, if you're writing a survey for an IT firm's employees, they may be very tech-savvy and familiar with the terms used in their industry. On the other hand, if you're creating a survey for consumers who use your product or service, then think about what level of technical language is appropriate for them (e.g., do they need definitions?).

You also want to ascertain where your respondents typically live so that you can ensure there isn't any bias in the survey results due to regional dialect differences. In this case, it's a good idea to have a strategy that can account for regional or language differences. For instance, translating the survey questions into the respondent's native languages is a way to get higher response rates. Translation also ensures that the respondents answer questions in an effective way as it improves the understanding of questions.

4) Choose the right B2B survey question types

Following are the two types of B2B survey questions that you can ask:-

  • Open-ended questions

These are the most common types of questions, and they ask respondents to answer with a free-form response. Open-ended questions are great for getting a better understanding of your audience's needs and desires. They're also very useful for gathering qualitative data about how customers feel about various aspects of your business or product, like customer service or shipping times.

  • Closed-ended questions

This type of question has predetermined answers that the respondent must choose from when answering it. Closed-ended questions can be used for collecting quantitative data about things like demographics (e.g., age), behaviours (e.g., where you shop), and attitudes toward specific products offered by competitors' brands versus yours (e.g., which is more trustworthy?).

5) Write and design a good question

Writing good survey questions is all about making sure that your research is thorough, accurate, and objective.

Here are some tips to remember when writing your questions:

  • Make sure your survey questions are clear, concise, and easy to understand.
  • Avoid asking subjective questions like "How likely are you to recommend our service?" instead try something like "On a scale of 1-7, how likely are you to recommend our service?". This makes it easier for both you and the respondent.
  • The best way to achieve objective questioning is by using open-ended response formats (such as rating scales) rather than closed response formats such as yes or no answers or multiple choice questions. This is because open-ended responses tend not only to lead to more accurate results but also give respondents greater freedom in expressing their opinions freely without feeling constrained by limited choices provided by closed-end options (e.g., 'Yes' vs 'No').

Summarising B2B survey questions

Setting up a survey consists of five key steps including setting up a research objective, outlining the information you want to know, choosing the right question types, and writing and designing the questions for it.

Determining an objective is critical because it will determine what type of information is needed from your survey. In addition to outlining what type of data you are looking for, making sure that this data will be useful in helping with your marketing strategy should also be considered in order to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your time and effort.

It’s also important that you consider how much time it will take before deciding on what kind of questions will be asked as this could affect how long it takes people who participate in them before they get bored or annoyed by doing so, leading them away from completing them all together.

Next, it’s important to choose the right question types as this will help determine what type of information you get from your survey. This can be done by asking open-ended questions or closed-ended ones. Closed-ended questions are those that allow participants to choose only one answer while open-ended questions allow them to write down their own responses instead. For more on these questions, check out this blog post

Having talked about B2B survey questions, let us now discuss their counterpart which is B2C survey questions. The main difference between B2B and B2C survey questions is the kind of target audience. A B2B survey is designed for B2B customers such as officers, employees, or decision-makers working in an organisation. On the other hand, B2C survey questions are developed for the end customer of a product or a service. For more on this topic, check out our blog post here.


The main takeaway is that setting up a survey consists of five key steps including setting up a research objective, outlining the information you want to know, choosing the right question types, and writing and designing the questions for it. For any questions on developing B2B surveys, please reach out to us at sales@grape-data.com. 

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