The Perfect Interior Design Client Questionnaire

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The Perfect Interior Design Client Questionnaire

Interior design questionnaire: Get the answers you need from clients.

Why is an interior design client questionnaire important?

What questions should you ask to better understand your interior design clients’ needs & their wish list for their project?

Here in my latest video, you’ll learn my reasons for sending out a client questionnaire & what types of questions I ask to ensure I get the answers I need.

If you have been thinking about using a client questionnaire, or you already use one in your client on-boarding process but your clients don’t always complete it, then by the end of the video you’ll know how to effectively get the answers you need before your initial consultation appointment.

I can confidently say this because I have successfully been using my client questionnaire since the very beginning of my career and 95% of clients complete it before we meet at the initial consultation meeting.

#1 The Client Questionnaire is an Important Part of Your On-boarding Process

One of your first points of contacts with a new interior design client is on the discovery call.

It’s here where you will ask specific questions in order to get a feel for what your potential clients’ needs are. Then once they book an initial consultation meeting with you, you’ll need to find out more about your new clients before you meet.

Plus, it’s important for them to consider different aspects of a project that they may not have thought about already, but that your questionnaire prompts them to think about ahead of time.

The client questionnaire allows you to get to know more about your new clients and to dig deeper into their reasons for wanting a change.

Although they may have been dreaming about renovating or decorating their home for some time, they probably haven’t considered some key questions. This is where I find the client questionnaire to be extremely helpful.

#2 The Types of Questions You Should Ask

Now let’s look at what type of questions you should ask in your client questionnaire. Here’s one question that I like to ask first:

I start by requesting each family member’s name and their age.  I want to know how many people live in the home and how old they are.

This is important to keep in mind not only as you are creating their design and selecting finishes and furnishings, but I also like to know this for when I first walk in the door.

Maybe I’ll be greeted by the entire family and if so I can say to the kids “Hey, you must be Toby and Angela.” This shows clients that you are detail-oriented and cared enough to take the time to review their responses.

Getting personal and showing you care is important.

#3 Getting Clients to Complete and Return the Questionnaire

Lastly, how do you get clients to complete and return your questionnaire before you meet?

This is what I say on the discovery call:

“In order to be best prepared for our meeting, we send you a questionnaire ahead of time and ask that you complete it and send it back to us 48 hours prior to the date of our appointment.

Two hours may seem like a long time together, but it goes by pretty quick and I want to be as efficient as I can be with the time that we have, making sure we address your biggest pain points and top priorities.”

Who doesn’t love hearing that we want to make the most efficient use of our time together?

To actually see me on a discovery call and in a consultation meeting, check out the incredible offer below!

Need a Questionnaire & 15+ More Template Downloads?

Get my ‘already done for you’ interior design client questionnaire along with many more templates, checklists, and email drafts so you can be super organized and confident with your clients.

All of this and so much more is included as part of my ROCK the Initial Consultation Processes package, which is available for purchase now and is one of my biggest sellers for a reason.

(Here’s my top selling designer resource, all bundled up for an even better price, if you are interested.)

I wish I had something like these available to me when I first started my business.  They are carefully thought out and will save you a ton of time, giving you the confidence to hit the ground running with your clients.

To see what other helpful resources I have for you to succeed in your interior design business, click here.

As an Interior Design Business Coach, my passion is to share what I’ve learned and help you achieve great success as well. xo

Do you use a client questionnaire?

Comment below and share your experience with having clients complete your questionnaire.

(20) Comments
  • Kerri Durkee
    | 3 October 2019

    Yes, I do use a questionnaire in my business. I was happy to hear that your questions are very similar to mine as well. (I guess I’m on the right track!) It makes the consultation/first meeting so much easier when you have some information ahead of time.

    • Claire Jefford
      | 3 October 2019

      Glad to hear that your questionnaire is working for you Kerri! I do like that it provides an opportunity for a better discussion at the offset of the meeting. Thanks for watching!

  • Steph
    | 3 October 2019

    Hi Claire! Do you send your questionnaire as a pdf (or word doc) to the client? Or do you make an online questionnaire so clients don’t have to scan and email it back once it’s completed? TIA!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Hey Stephanie. I have mine done both ways. The client can either print it off and fill it out with a pen, then send me the completed copy. Or we also have the digital one on line too that we can link them to for completion. I still find most of my clients like to print it off. Great question!

  • Lisa Peck
    | 5 October 2019

    We also use a questionnaire! I also ask about patterns they dislike and their shopping style…go to a store they love and select from that store, go to every store and try on like items then decide…etc…I think it’s revealing. Great video Claire!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      The pattern question, yes. I once had a client who didn’t like houndstooth (I didn’t even know that not liking houndstooth was possible. LOL). Thanks for watching Lisa!

  • Mary Ann Benoit
    | 6 October 2019

    Nice post. Yes, I use a questionnaire for Edesign, but not usually for in person consultations although I ask a lot of these questions on the phone before I go. I really liked your perspective that it’s important for them to consider different aspects of a project that they may not have thought about already, but that the questionnaire prompts them to think about ahead of time.

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Thanks Mary Ann. Yes, I find that even if someone has been thinking about something for a long time, often new ideas and considerations emerge as things becomes more ‘real’. Cheers for watching!

  • Leslie Carothers
    | 6 October 2019

    Claire: Even in my end of the business, which is not design, I use a questionnaire before beginning, and this is so helpful in prompting deeper and more fruitful conversations.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Absolutely Leslie! It’s a process, to gather information and get to know our clients better – no matter what the service may be. Thanks for watching.

  • Darla Powell
    | 6 October 2019

    We use a questionnaire also. It’s very helpful. Terrific video!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Cheers my dear!

  • Deborah Main
    | 6 October 2019

    A discovery call and questionnaires are so important. You highlight why in this excellent post and video.

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Thanks Deborah. For new designers, it may not seem so obvious to understand what tools are needed to conduct a successful business. This is just a small part in our process that has always worked well for us, so I felt it was important to share. 🙂

  • Julie Lampe
    | 6 October 2019

    I was just working on mine today! Will definitely be coming back to this later!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 6 October 2019

      Awesome Julie!

  • Janet Lorusso
    | 6 October 2019

    Always great advice, Claire! Asking for a decorating style preference is tricky because different words mean different things to different people. Images are a great way to clarify a bit. Our questionnaire seems to always be a work in progress!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 8 October 2019

      Oh yes Janet, sometimes clients may know what style they are drawn to or like, but they don’t know the words to describe it. That is where the ideabooks or Pinterest boards come in handy. Cheers for your feedback!

  • Carla Bast
    | 8 October 2019

    Great post, and a good reminder to always be looking for ideas on better processes!

    • Claire Jefford
      | 8 October 2019

      Thanks Carla. Reviewing processes regularly is important in order to evaluate what’s working and what might need to be updated. Never a dull moment as a business owner!

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