8 Tips for the Perfect Personal Trainer Client Satisfaction Survey

Mar 23, 2017 - 7 min read
woman doing stretches in a park

Creating a solid customer base is the first step, but once you have established that, it’s up to you to keep the retention rates high. Satisfaction is an essential for the reputation of your business. In fact, studies have shown that satisfied clients share their experiences with three people on average, whereas unsatisfied clients share it with eleven. This underlines that you should always be aware of your clients’ satisfaction with your services. Understanding their needs is essential. If clients feel that they have been taken seriously and know that you care about them, it will create more loyalty. One of the easiest and most efficient ways to gauge client satisfaction is to set up a client satisfaction survey. So you don’t miss out on any important topics, we’ve gathered what makes a good client satisfaction survey and included a free example.

1. Determine the Primary Needs of Your Clients

To create a good satisfaction survey, you have to determine which criteria are important for your clients. Is it the price? The quality of training? Or the way you communicate with them? The best way to find this out is a mini qualitative survey, or with a conversation. You can simply sit down for a few minutes with your most loyal clients, or someone who know your business well. Mention to them that you are working on a satisfaction survey and let them help you gather the topics you need to cover. The purpose of this is to explore which products and services you need to focus on, and which areas of your business that needs to be reviewed. This will help you set up the right questions in order to understand how you are performing in different areas.

2. List and Organize Your Ideas

Once you have gotten an overview of your topics, you’ll have a lot of information to process. You can now create a list and organize it by the level of priority or ease of task (e.g. 1. Training performance, 2. Results, etc.). It’s important to understand this step and to take it seriously. It’ll help you with the formulation of the questions, which is the most difficult part of the creation of a survey.

3. Decide How You Purchase the Survey

The way that you gather your research depends on the methods that you pick. Will it be over the phone, the internet, or even face to face? There are a number of different methods, but you have to ask yourself ‘how much time am I willing to spend on this?’. A face to face survey takes a lot of planning and time, but it is a sure way to gain useful insights. If you create it online not as much time will be taken up, and you can reach a wider audience. However, you’ll have to mostly closed questions, with 2 or 3 opened questions. It’s really a personal choice and depends on your business. Each method has its pros and cons, but you shouldn’t start writing the questions until you know how you’ll implement the survey.

4. Draft the Questions… and the Answers If Needed

It’s the most important, but also the most difficult part in creating a survey; writing down the questions. Be careful and respect these rules. A neutral tone, simple language, a direct style, short questions, and no contradictions. The neutrality of the questions is important because you don’t want to influence your customer’s answer. You also have to create the answers to lots of questions. The best solution is using a scale of opinion. For example 6 options, from unsatisfied to very satisfied. Adding open questions is also an option, but be careful as they take more time to answer and are the hardest to analyze. Your introductory questions should be on demographics like age, gender, and nationality. This will help ease your clients into the questionnaire. You should then begin with questions about the general satisfaction of your clients, getting more precise as the questionnaire goes on.


Need a satisfaction survey but don’t have time to create one? Download our free satisfaction survey and use, copy, or adapt it to your business! Click here to download

5. Practice a Test

Do not skip this step! It’s like skipping breakfast in the morning. You can practice with a small group of clients who you are close with, or even on friends and coworkers. It will help you to evaluate the amount of time needed to answer the survey, and it will also help you find out whether you are asking the right questions, and lastly if the questionnaire is well organized and understandable. Once you start to administer the survey, a little change could have a huge impact on your results.

6. Administrate the Survey

You’ve already made your choice for administration, so don’t change it now! If you want to do it face to face, then a good solution is to practice it at the end of every session. In case that you have chosen to do it by phone, make sure you have a list of pre-prepared questions ready. If you go a little off topic, that’s okay. Just make sure you steer it back on track. If you have chosen the online solution, you can find a lot of differents software that can help you, here is a nonexhaustive list:

https://www.google.com/intl/com/forms/about/ https://apps.facebook.com/my-surveys/ http://www.evalandgo.com/

7. Analyze the Results

Numerous software has been created in order to analyze the results of surveys.

If you have chosen the online solution, then don’t worry because this option is probably already integrated into the software you had used. If you have chosen the face to face or phone solution, then you can find a nonexhaustive list of useful software for analyzing your results here:

http://www.evalandgo.com/?gclid=CObXpLXhgNICFWEo0wodaOgNUg http://www.survio.com

The risk here is that you will be lost in the tables and a mass of information. The best solution is to choose a flat sorting method (to analyze singular questions) for each question, and a cross-sorting method (for a comparison between one or more questions) when a focus is needed on a section of your clientele.

8. Create a Report and Put It Into Practice

With all of the results, it’s important to create a report (for yourself, or for the personal trainers that you work with). This way, it will be easier to understand the results of the survey and, to make the changes that are needed. It is not only crucial to know where the problem is, improving yourself and your business will get you more loyal customers.

With every problem that you find with the help of the survey, you’ll have to face it. Take the results seriously and analyze how you can improve yourself and your business. Forming this list, from the easiest to the hardest tasks, will help to guide you through the process. It will allow you to organize all the things that you need to do, and it will stop you from forgetting something. After one year of survey practice, you can compare the differents reports and see how you’ve evolved.


Want to get closer to your clients? Download our free satisfaction survey and use, copy, or adapt it for your business! Click here to download


Customer satisfaction and customer retention are two of the most important criteria for a business to work. It’s not an easy thing to do and so practicing surveying every year at a regulated time will definitely help you to improve your services. It will allow you to get closer to your clients and develop a real relationship with them.

Prepare for Success

Want more tips and information about how to take your personal training business to the next level? Download our free ebook, Running an Efficient Personal Training Business to receive tips on efficiency, acquisition, retention, sales, trends, and more.

Download Now

Join 51,035 other fitness professionals and get free updates

By submitting this form you agree to our privacy statement