Feedback is one of the best ways to measure the success of your event as well as identify areas that may need improvement. An attendee event satisfaction survey should be viewed as an assessment tool and not a form of criticism. By the same token, the goal of a survey should never be to garner praise. You want honest feedback to give your survey genuine value for making your next event better.

Event Satisfaction Survey

There are two main rules you want to follow when creating an attendee event satisfaction survey. The questions should be simple. They should also give you a snapshot evaluation of your event.

Keep It Simple

The first rule is to make your survey easy to take. That means it shouldn’t require a lot of time for attendees to complete. Be sure that you ask only a few questions. It’s always best to offer attendees multiple choice answers.

Keep in mind, if you have more than 12 questions or ones that require essay style answers, very few people will take the time to respond. Simple and easy is a good guideline. Some of the best surveys only include 5-6 questions.

You should have a feel about how many questions to include in your survey based on your attendees and type of event. For example, a weekend event with several speakers and sessions will warrant more questions than a two-hour event. Plan your survey accordingly.

Ask Questions that Are Easy to Analyze

There’s no point in conducting a survey if you can’t analyze the data and correlate it into a meaningful assessment tool. It’s very difficult to correlate open-ended questions, whereas yes, no, maybe or different levels of responses can be analyzed easily.

Give Several Response Choices

You want to form questions that offer you the opportunity to give attendees several possible answers. You can use radio buttons, matrix fields, and dropdown lists for ease of use. Some of your questions will have a yes or no response, while others many have degrees of responses, such as always, sometimes, never.

An example of multiple response choices include, “Yes” “Maybe” “No” and be sure to provide  space for comments, such as “Comment:                                                                             or “If not, please explain                                                                                                        .

If you feel there’s a need for open-ended questions, limit them and place either at the end or toward the end of the survey. Some people find surveys that require this type of answer to be off-putting and will simply choose not to participate in the survey.

By placing this type of question at the end, you will at least have some previous data to assess should they abandon the survey. You may also receive a higher participation rate in essay-style questions if only one or two are at the end. You can try two surveys, one with essay questions and one with only radio button replies, to see which has a higher participation rate. This can help you tailor future surveys for specific venues and clients.

Suggested Questions for Survey

When forming your questions keep in mind that you want to receive feedback on your event, so make them event specific and related to the service(s) you provided.

Be specific:

  • Did the event meet your expectations?
  • Was this your first event with us?
  • Did you enjoy the speaker(s)?
  • How did you learn of the event?
  • Did you like the venue?
  • Were the event times convenient for you?
  • Did you like the catering? (You can get more specific if this is important to your event, such as “Did you like the food?” and “Did you like the drinks/refreshments?”
  • Were the event days convenient for you?
  • Did you feel there was adequate time for networking?
  • Please rate the event with 1 being the highest and 5 the lowest.
  • Do you feel the event fee was fair for what you received?
  • Was the registration easy?
  • Were the parking accommodations satisfactory?
  • Did you learn anything new by participating in this event?
  • Were the programs/sessions of interest to you?
  • Did the sessions provide you with adequate information/skills?
  • Was the duration of the event, sessions/programs sufficient?
  • Did you have many take-aways from the event?
  • Have you attended any of our other events?
  • Would you attend similar events?
  • Would you recommend this event to others?

Again, you will want to provide space after each question to allow for comments. Direction options include:

  • Comments
  • Please share
  • Please explain
  • Why not?
  • Why?

Ask Questions that Help You to Evaluate

If you form your questions to be specific about your event, an event satisfaction survey becomes a highly-valuable assessment tool. Taking the time to conduct a survey and correlating the data into a report can save your company money, increase future event attendance and build/improve relationships with clients. Make sure you also respond to any concerns or criticisms expressed and use them to improve your next event.