I'm done with filling out surveys forever!

That’s it, I quit! I’m sick and tired of EVERY transaction I make, and that EVERY product I buy requires me to rate that product or tell them about the experience I had working with them. If I call and talk to someone at a bank, I have to tell them how it went, if I buy something from a hardware store, they expect me to rate their product. And it’s not just one survey email, it’s multiple reminder emails plus text messages begging me to rate them or their products. So how do I opt out?

I don’t want to waste any more of my precious time filling out surveys so I simply ignore them now, and eventually they give up asking me. I don’t care if someone’s bonus depends on my saying they did a good job. They can find some other way to determine whether someone is deserving of a bonus that doesn’t involve me. That’s what we did back before customer satisfaction surveys were invented.

Surveys used to be a once in a while thing, and in the beginning I would take the time to answer their 15 question survey even though I felt they didn’t really care what I thought. Sometimes, as an incentive, you might be eligible to win a prize, which is something I never did.

The irony is that when I headed up a tech support team for a large Silicon Valley company I had to put together a survey and send it out to customers asking them to rate the support they got from us. That reinforced to upper management that we were doing a good job, but I didn’t need a survey to know that. I could just sit and watch my team answer difficult technical questions patiently and effectively. No surveying required.

The places that nag* me to write a review or take a survey, I’ll do so, but it’ll be a bad review and I’ll specifically state that the bad review is because they keep spamming me for reviews. From time to time I’ll get a follow up email from them saying they’ll take me off the mailing list (that I didn’t opt into to begin with), but the next time I buy something they’ll start back up.

I had once case where a car dealership had my email address on someone else’s account. Every time this guy got any service done, I’d get a barrage of emails asking me to review the service. Multiple times I wrote back and asked them to stop, which they didn’t. When it comes to car dealership service reviews (IME), the customer can leave 1 to 5 stars, but internally it’s pass/fail. If you give them 4 stars, it’s a fail and they’ll get called out on it. With that in mind, leaving 1 star reviews every time this guy had work done, with an explanation as to why I’m doing it, finally got it to stop.

*nag as in more than one email, especially if the subsequent emails are “reminders” to take the survey, as if I meant to but forgot.

Here in Ontario, we have The Beer Store, which is the main beer retailing place (soon to change, though). The last few years, they’ve started adding some “Rate my shit” questions on the credit card reader you use to pay. It interrupts the flow of the transaction, the question changes periodically so you can’t even just remember “Press X”, and the staff pretty much always just press the button to dismiss the question for you when it pops up (it’s not even consistent, they’ll turn it on for a week or two, then turn it off, then back on…)

So they annoy the customer on every transaction, they annoy their staff hundreds of times a day, and they’re not getting any useful information out of it. Utterly ridiculous.

During the pandemic, the contactless tap credit card feature was a godsend because you didn’t have to touch the filthy keypad, which has been shown to be a germ-laden disease incubator even at the best of times. Contactless payment was so important during the pandemic, in fact, that credit card issuers substantially raised the amount you could pay that way without having to enter a PIN on the filthy keypad.

So imagine my disgust when after I tapped to pay at one of my favourite supermarkets, grateful that I didn’t have to touch the COVID-infested keypad, the screen popped up with “Please rate your shopping experience today” and there was no way to proceed without giving it a rating. It was hard to believe that store management could be so incredibly clueless during the height of a pandemic.

The first time it happened I gave it a “1” (worst) on a scale of 1 to 5, then doused the contaminated finger in hand sanitizer. Next time I refused to touch the keypad at all and let the cashier deal with it.

ETA: To add another comment, when I get followup surveys like the OP mentioned, I usually ignore them unless there’s a compelling reason to provide some input. The last time I rented a car was from a small Enterprise outlet that I used because it was a convenient location. Everything went very smoothly from pickup to return.

During the return processing the manager of this small outlet, who had been impeccably professional and polite and provided great service, told me that I’d be getting a survey and positive responses mattered a lot to him and his staff. When I got the survey, I gave them the best possible rating because I could hardly imagine anything they could have done better and was glad to help him out.

Rest assured that absolutely noone in a position of authority will read your comments, but they WILL use the low score to justify withholding raises or firing people the next time the CEO wants a new Maserati.

As a returning customer, how would you rate your SDMB experience?

That block and report spam click box works great.

I have never in my life encountered a place that requires a survey response. Where do you live and what do you interact with?

Conversely I encounter a dozen a day that request a survey response. 100% of which I ignore.

Ignoring is easy. You might try it.

A friend that works for a car dealer told me that if they have a difficult customer, they make sure to NOT send a survey.

I guess you’re less likely to get negative feedback if you don’t go out of your way to ask for it?

Yep, opting out (one at a time) is certainly the way I handle these surveys.

Some other surveys, that have nothing to do with products or service but are supposed to be opinion polls, I also opt out of, as in my experience they are 99% push polls trying to foist an opinion on me. One of them particularly will nag me three or four times for every poll they want me to take.

Okay, you got me. I was being overly dramatic. The only time I was actually “required” to rate something was when I was checking out of a store and it wouldn’t process my credit card until I answered a survey question. In that case I gave them a 1 of out 5 for making me take a survey in order to buy something, and I stopped frequenting that store…

However, in a normal week where I talk to companies on the phone, or purchase something in a store, at least 50% of the time I can expect an email survey to show up a day or two after the transaction. I do ignore them, but the fact that I have to deal with them at all is a waste of my time.

If there is an easy way to opt-out of customer satisfaction surveys, other than not ever buying anything again or never interacting directly with a company, I would love to know how to do it. Just as I like to know how to opt-out of political ads on TV, which I continue to get bombarded with all day, every day, until election day. There should be a law against it.

I bank with Citibank and they regularly want my feedback after an interaction with the bank, even if that’s simply withdrawing money from the ATM, converting a twenty-dollar bill to five-dollar bills or paying a bill on the website.

And then also iPhone apps will pop up with a 1-5 star rating screen sometimes when I use them, though there’s a Not Now option.

The only survey I respond to is Sonny’s BBQ, which has a contact number at the bottom of your receipt and if you answer the questions on the website, they give you a code to use next time you’re there which gives you $5 off a total order of $25 or more. That’s cash money. Two people would have no problem racking up a $25 bill (1 person having a decent sized dinner comes very close). Walmart, on the other hand, has a chance to win a $1000 gift card in a random drawing every month if you fill out their survey. No thanks.

Would the OP fill out this survey about their feelings on completing surveys? It’ll only take a few minutes and help us tailor future surveys to your needs.

Thanks ever so much.

I’m thinking survey results are provided to search engines so that the company’s website is more likely to land on the first page of results. One of the social media directors at work explained that companies can go the “Paid” route and pay a flat fee to accomplish this, or pay a lower “Organic” fee that enables Google to analyze your marketing campaign and change your copy to reflect current search trends.

If the company can provide copious amounts of positive survey data, that helps optimize search results. This leads me to think when companies get negative feedback for sending out surveys, they don’t reasonably conclude “Gosh, we’re spamming our customers too much and risk alienating them.” Instead, they think “Gosh, we’re not sending out enough surveys!”

I feel like a distinction needs to be made between doing unpaid statistical metrics for a corporation (responding to an email after you interacted with an AI bot online) vs. helping out a low-level worker hoping to hang onto their job, when their satisfaction rating is absolutely critical to that.

Ah, but will they? It’s not like unions are at the peak of their power right now. Employers do pretty much what they want, and certainly the least for their employees they can legally get away with. Low-level workers often have terrible jobs and terrible lives. Why not help them out a little?


This should be required reading for everyone who’s ever rated a store clerk:

I’d add, to refuse to rate an employee at all is equivalent to giving them less than a 5 rating.

I stop at Dollar General many mornings to pick up snacks for Rocco, our parrot. I always use the self checkout. Dollar General has begun eliminating self checkouts from their stores, so I do their survey on the receipt thing. I always point out that I used SCO to get out quicker and mention that the day this store stops offering SCO I’ll start shopping elsewhere.

If I have a particularly bad experience, or a particularly good experience, I might be willing to take the time to fill out a short satisfaction survey, but that doesn’t happen very often. I’m more likely to speak with the manager when I am back in the store and tell them about a good or bad experience I had in case they are interested. I’m not there to get someone in trouble, or to get someone a raise, I’ve found that store managers are mostly unaware of how their employees are interacting with the public, and they sometimes appreciate some frank and honest feedback.

It may be wishful thinking on my part but it seems that every time I fill out a survey regarding my recent shopping experience at Meijer, where I point out specific products are not available, my next visit has the items in stock. Yeah coincidence I’m sure. NTL, I’ve been to three locations looking for a plant based hair accessory by Goody brand. Always out of stock or discontinued ? I want their French hair pins again, so I mentioned it in the last survey. :crossed_fingers:

Another problem: everybody is so accustomed to give out 5’s automatically, it is very difficult to differentiate good businesses from bad ones on Yelp and the like. If I see a restaurant with a 4.1 average rating on Yelp, it probably means it’s pretty bad, and any restaurant below a 4.0 average is probably terrible.