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5 mins

How to run a B2B survey for due diligence the right way

The perfect way to design your B2B survey for due diligence

Mar 9, 2023
B2B market research

Definition of a B2B survey for due diligence

In this article, we’ll explore the meaning of a B2B survey for due diligence and how to conduct a B2B survey for due diligence the right way. Follow these easy steps below and see the results!

Investopedia defines due diligence as an investigation, audit, or review performed to confirm facts or details of a matter under consideration. Essentially, commercial due diligence is a risk mitigation technique in different types of situations such as in marketability, business competitiveness,  or profitability.  You can conduct commercial due diligence voluntary or legally and depending upon the context you can deploy different strategies to conduct due diligence.  However, commercial due diligence as a concept is very broad and thus you can apply this concept to a variety of situations such as analysing the behaviour of customers towards a particular brand.  

A B2B  survey for due diligence  also sometimes referred to as a Due Diligence Questionnaire or DDQ, is a collection of questions designed to help a company analyze various aspects of a company when making an M&A or investment or partnership decision. Of course, there can be several other reasons for conducting such a survey such as vendor due diligence. Therefore, you can design each B2B survey for due diligence uniquely according to the purpose of conducting due diligence. Note that a B2B survey for  due diligence  is just one part of the bigger picture of conducting due diligence.

Although there is no standardized survey, the Institutional Limited Partners Association (ILPA) provides a comprehensive and updated questionnaire for limited partners in a downloadable format.

How to run a B2B survey for due diligence

At GrapeData we investigated how to properly run a B2B survey for due diligence. Furthermore, we have highlighted below the 10 steps to follow.

Step 1: Establishing a rapport with the client

First and foremost, you need to make sure that you build a good connection and a rapport with your client. Before starting the project, it is important to get to know your client and understand their aim to get out of the B2B survey for due diligence. Do your background research on the B2B survey topic and the client’s business. Make sure to ask clarifying questions when needed. Blindly designing a survey will likely leave the client dissatisfied and won't help you go a long way.

Step 2: Testing a  B2B Survey for due diligence

After establishing a good rapport with the client, we then move on to test the survey. You can  check whether all the links work on whatever platform the survey is made on. By testing a survey you can also check whether you have captured respondent’s id correctly on the service provider’s platform such as Qualtrics.

Step 3: Develop a strategy for conducting the B2B survey for due diligence

Each B2B survey is unique and therefore it is imperative that you make a personalized strategy to conduct it. There are several ways to get contributors to answer the survey questions. Depending on the purpose of the survey and time constraints, you could use direct respondents, face to face interviews or phone interviews or a combination of all three. For instance, if the subject matter of the B2B survey for due diligence is complex, it may be better to conduct face to face interviews. Or for example if the respondents are geographically scattered you can conduct phone interviews.

Step 4: Pre Launch

You can conduct a pre-launch with 10% of a B2B survey for due diligence respondents to get initial results and check the quality of answers and if questions are formed properly. A soft launch of a survey is usually when we just kick off a project and we gather the initial 10% of respondents and then pause the survey for our client to review. During that process you can see the data quality coming through and  you can check if the questions have been scripted and programmed properly to give the desired result. Thus, you  can make some adjustments before the survey goes to full launch.

Step 5: Pick the right respondents

Picking B2B respondents may be harder than picking B2C respondents because of several reasons. This is because businesses are fewer in number than individuals and the target audience can be niche. You can use a number of different approaches to pick your B2B respondents. If your website has sufficient traffic, you can include a pop up on your homepage directing businesses to answer surveys. You can also use your own CRM base that would already have a list of clients. Finally, you can opt for a more traditional approach and ask clients to answer survey questions face-to-face.

Step 6: Setting the right price to incentivise respondents

Setting the right price for your respondents to answer questions is crucial because otherwise they can be discouraged to take the B2B  survey. for due diligence. Typically, B2B respondents require that the price be set at a higher rate than it would have been in the case of B2C respondents. Usually, the price can range anywhere from 60 to 200 pounds or even higher for B2B respondents as compared to a range of 5 to 60 pounds for a B2C respondent. Additionally, B2B respondents don't have a lot of time so it's important to emphasize that participating in the survey will be beneficial for their business.

Step 7: Setting the questionnaire

Spend some time deciding the flow of your B2B survey for due diligence and categorizing them. Ensure that your questions are free from any grammatical or spelling errors. Begin your survey by asking screening questions. For example, this could be checking whether the respondent has the right job title and function. Also make sure to ask profiling questions such as the number of employees in the organization or the nature of the industry in which the business operates.

Avoid long, overly complicated, or leading questions. Consider adding ‘other’ or’ I don’t know’ options for questions that are not precise. To capture qualitative data, think about adding open ended questions where respondents can answer anything.

Step 8: Picking the right service provider and panel provider

Carefully choose the service provider since they are the ones who will be designing your survey. It is advisable to choose a provider that has an established reputation or that has a previous positive track record. We recommend Qualtrics. It is equally important to choose a trusted panel provider to give you the highest quality of contributors.

Step 9: Consider running a pilot survey

Pilot surveys are useful because they can provide feedback for any areas of improvement and fix any technical issues. Think about running a pilot survey and rolling it out to friends, family, and colleagues.

Step 10: Launch the survey

There are several ways to launch a B2B survey. You could consider embedding the survey on your website. You could also send the survey through email. Or if you’re conducting phone or face to face interviews, of course the way to go is to call the respondents. Ensure that you communicate a deadline for completing the survey to your respondents. Also, it doesn't work if you just roll out the survey once. Send it out a couple of times to encourage the respondents to fill it.

Step 11: Data Integrity and Analyse the results

In a world where concerns surrounding data privacy are rising, it is vital that you have in place a mechanism to ensure data privacy. You have to make sure that you have in place encryption mechanisms and that you store data securely. Usually, if you are a panel provider the job to analyse the responses will be up to your client. But if this job is up to you, make sure you clean and format the data before analysing it. Also keep in mind your original goal of collecting the information when analysing it.

We’ve crafted the perfect way to design your B2B survey from establishing a rapport with your client to analysing the results.

If you need more tips on how to create the perfect B2B survey, check out this guide.

Stuck on how to create the perfect survey? We’ve got you covered! Contact us through our website or Linkedin page.

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