Carewords web research… our client prep guide makes it easy

Customer Carewords: the CCI client preparation guide


The Customer Centric Index (CCI) survey gives you feedback from key audiences (future students, current students, faculty and staff, alumni, parents are possible). The CCI tells you what people like and do not like about your website before you start enhancing or rebuilding. The CCI is part of a comprehensive Customer Carewords research program.


People interested in doing CCI research often are more concerned about the time it will take them on their end to get ready for a survey than they are about the price. The answer: it doesn’t take a great deal of time at all if you have an available email database of people to invite to take the survey.


See for yourself. The details are here in the “Client Preparation Guide.” If you’re interested in more information about doing a CCI survey, email me at


CCI Survey: Client Preparation Guide for Higher Education


Who will you survey?

  • Higher education clients can include up to five groups in a CCI survey: alumni; faculty and staff; current students; future or prospective students; parents.
  • It is also possible to segment each group (i.e., graduate and undergraduate “future students”) depending on the number of people you can invite to complete the survey.

Who controls the database for your survey groups?


    • Some clients have experienced unexpected delays in decisions about whether or not to include a particular group in the CCI survey or in the exact timing of the survey invitation due to other contacts already planned. Best to check as early as possible about the willingness of different groups to allow the CCI survey to go forward at the most appropriate time.  
    • After this step, we can set a starting date for the survey.

How many people do you need to contact?


    • We are looking for at least 100 responses from each individual group that you survey. Survey response rates will differ for each group, with the highest rates likely from current students and faculty and staff.
    • An important first step is to determine how many active email addresses for each group are available for contact. Once we know this, we can advise you on the minimum number to contact.
    • In most cases, response rates are lowest for future or prospective students so you should plan to mail to a minimum of 3,000 people in this group. Response rates for this group likely will also vary depending on how recently the online inquiries were received.
    • For surveys that include “future students” we recommend a prize for participants. One recent client did quite well with a drawing for one of five $50 Amazon gift certificates.

Who prepares the survey?


    • We set up a standard CCI survey on Survey Monkey.
    • Clients can send us one open-ended question to add at the end of the survey. We will forward these comments to you at the end of the survey. Detailed analysis of the open-ended comments is not included in the formal CCI report. You will receive all comments in a single report rather than divided by the individual groups surveyed.
    • The first three clients who used an open-ended question received responses from 50 to 75 percent of the people completing the survey.

When will you survey?


    • It is best to send the email survey invitations to each group as close together as possible, but in any case no longer than 4 weeks apart.

Who prepares the email invitation?


    • We will send you a draft copy of the email invitation that you can adjust before sending.

Who sends the invitation?


    • Each client sends the email invitation to people in their own database. We never receive email addresses from clients.

When will you know how the response is going?


    • We will monitor the response rate and let you know the results by the second day of the survey invitation to each group. In most cases, the great majority of responses arrive within two days, depending on the launch time the previous day.
    • In some cases, we may advise that you send a second round of invitations if database size permits and the response rate seems low.
    • The cost of the survey does not vary with the number of responses so we recommend that you send an many initial invitations as possible.

Estimated Time for Survey Results:


    • You can expect a report with results for a single survey group about 2 weeks after the initial invitation is sent.
    • The exact timing of each project will vary with the number of groups included and the amount of time used to contact them. We will report results from each group in a single report. If you send invitations to several groups on or about the same day, 2 weeks should also be enough time to receive your results.

 Questions? Send me an email at


That’s all for now 




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