If you’re running a business that deals with customers, which is every business, customer feedback is critical. Feedback gives you an idea of how satisfied your customers are with your products and services. Additionally, with the right services you can also figure out how to improvements to your products and services by leveraging the feedback you are gathering from your consumers.
So let’s take a look at seven (7) key methods you can use to get customer feedback and grow your business.
How to get customer feedback
Using a service like SurveyMonkey will allow you to send out the link to your customer list, Twitter followers, and anyone else. Then within a few days you will have all sorts of feedback from both customers and potential customers. There are also other platforms like Fieldboom that allow you to create great looking survey forms and give you the option to embed them onto your existing website or domain as well.
The major issues with surveys is that sometimes either nobody finishes the survey or the responses aren’t helpful. It doesn’t have to be this way. Use these easy tricks to make sure you get great responses from your surveys.
Keep it short. If you want to get quality answers from your customers, it’s critical that you ask only a few key questions. Try to keep your surveys to 5 questions, and definitely don’t go over 10.
Emails and customer feedback forms
You can also use tools like Delighted to collect customer feedback via email and track what’s called NPS (Net Promoter Score). Additionally, offering easy ways for customers to provide feedback while using your product is a smart approach as your customers are constantly thinking of ways that your business could be better. Maybe parts of your site don’t quite give them what they’re looking for. Or maybe they found something that’s broken. And more often than not, they won’t reach out to your support team (an act that is typically reserved for when the problem is serious).
Enter customer feedback forms. The entire purpose of the form is to make it really easy for your customers to tell you when something isn’t working quite right. It’s available as soon as someone needs it, out of the way when they don’t, and when used, it sends the customer’s message to right people on your team who can address it. You can even have the form collect information like the account name, the URL, and browser version so you can recreate the problem and determine exactly how to fix it. If you’re looking to implement this kind of feedback form, the folks over at Kissmetrics have written an excellent blog post on just how to do that.
Reach out through a call
Reaching out over the phone is one of the most undervalued methods to getting customer feedback. If you want to truly understand your customers needs and wants, you really need to go talk to them.
Using surveys, email, and analytics are great for what they are, but you end up missing out on all sorts of contextual information. Customers might say they need more money and more time. But which one are they really passionate about? Which one truly keeps them up at night? You won’t know for sure until you hear the passion in their voices as they talk about their problems.
You want a chance to be able to dig deeper and understood the root of their concerns and feature requests so you can best address them.
User activity (via analytics)
You can use web analytics to get an idea about which features in your product your customers are using the most (and least). Customer analytics tools like Kissmetrics are perfect for tracking your customer’s journey with your product, allowing you to understand either why they did or didn’t convert into a paying customer.
What if you could watch someone use your product or website? You’ll see what sections they’re drawn to, what catches their eye, and where they get confused. That kind of information is invaluable.
Well, there are services that give you exactly that. You can define a task that you want someone to complete, have a random person do it, and get a recording of the entire process. For a long time, it took tens of thousands of dollars to pull this off. You need to have a research firm do it for you. These days, the cost has become very reasonable.
If you’re interested in usability tests, then you should check out UserTesting.com, which offers tests at $39 per person. Running these tests can save you a lot of headache down the road by showing you where your biggest problems are.
Listening through social media can prove particularly useful for gathering candid feedback from customers. Direct comments or mentions on social networks aren’t the only way for your business to collect customer feedback — many social networks have polling tools built in (including Twitter). Consider this quick poll conducted on Facebook by Fitbit:
On Delivery Feedback
Some companies, such as furniture companies like Urban Ladder will deliver and install their products at the customer’s home and/or business, so having the delivery and/or install team there offers up a unique opportunity to take the feedback from the customer right then and there.
Why does customer feedback matter?
Customer feedback and customer service are incredibly important to your business. Your customer service team is your front line, they are the ones who deal with the customers (happy and otherwise), which puts them in a good position to understand the major pain points your customers have with your product and/or service. It’s mission critical that you get that information in front of the appropriate teams within the company to make sure you can solve those pain points because failing to do so may mean the loss of customers.