Businesses are only able to prosper when their customers are happy. But how do you know when they are satisfied? How do you know if their perception of your products and services matches your intent? The answer is customer feedback. Asking for feedback from your customers is a great way to begin understanding their expectations and learning how to meet them. When customer feedback is collected and implemented properly, it can greatly improve the quality of your overall brand.
So, what are the best ways to go about asking for customer feedback?
One of the most customer-preferred methods of receiving sales and support assistance is via live chat. If this is a tool your business website already offers, you should consider taking advantage of it to also collect feedback. This can easily be done by asking for the feedback right after the end of a sales or support conversation. You can ask about their experience with the chat and the agent’s performance. This step can even be automated via chat bots that send specific questions or pop ups that allow customers to leave a star rating.
Email is one of the most popular and convenient ways to collect feedback from your customers. This is because most people expect an email of some sort after a transaction has been completed anyway. Use this chance to include feedback questions in your confirmation email. Another popular strategy is waiting a few days for your customer to become acclimated with their new product or recent service and then sending an email survey to gain insights.
Email is such an effective method of obtaining customer feedback because it enables you to have a one-on-one conversation with the customer and tailor follow up questions for their specific concerns and requests.
The benefit of collecting feedback directly in your app or on your website is that you will be able to gain the most relevant and accurate information because your company is fresh in the mind of the customer. Not to mention they are currently engaging with your brand which means they will be more likely to leave feedback right then than they are to come back and do it later.
In addition to collecting feedback about your products and services, this method is also a great way to receive advice on how to improve your app or website’s functionality and design. This will provide you with an opportunity to fix any bugs and glitches that your customers may complain about.
You can even offer incentives such as discounts or downloadable files that help encourage more people to leave feedback.
SMS, or text message, is one of the newer yet more effective methods for feedback collection. Studies show that text messages have a higher open rate and response rate. The key to gaining feedback via SMS is keeping your text messages simple with either an easy one word reply option or a link that takes customers to a short survey. This detail is especially important because people tend to abandon feedback surveys halfway through if they are too lengthy.
Social media has quickly grown in prevalence as a way for people to share their good and bad experiences with brands. It is important to always monitor your social media platforms and see what people are saying about your company. This is one the few methods where you might not have to actually ask for feedback. Sometimes just sitting back, listening and watching can tell you everything you need to know in order to take the appropriate action. Be sure to make your presence known and thank your customers for all reviews.
However, you can use social media to ask your customers for feedback. One of the most popular ways to do this is by creating polls on Twitter and Instagram Stories.
Business Review Platforms
If your company is listed on one of the many business review platforms, such as Yelp or Yellow Pages, consider asking your customers to leave a review there. In addition to providing you with useful feedback, customer reviews on these platforms help to shape your online reputation and credibility. Because the platform provides a separation between the customer and the brand, you are more likely to receive accurate feedback as customers generally find these platforms to be a safe space where they can be honest.
What Questions Should You Ask?
More importantly than the channel you choose to obtain your feedback, is the type of questions you ask. The questions you ask your customers will ultimately play a huge role in how useful your feedback is and whether you get any feedback at all. When asking for feedback, be sure that you are starting a conversation. Refrain from yes or no questions as this yields a response that is too vague to be of any use to you. Open-ended questions encourage free flowing responses and provide an opportunity to receive honest and in-depth evaluations.
It is important to remember to ask about the parts and not just the whole. If you simply ask “Can you give us some feedback?” you will receive very few responses because customers won’t know what exactly to say. However, if you ask specific questions about different aspects of your business, it makes the process of leaving feedback a bit easier and clearer.
Examples of questions to ask for obtaining customer feedback include:
How did you hear about us? (to decide what marketing strategies are working well)
How were your interactions with our employees or customer service staff?
What did you enjoy most about your experience?
Were your expectations met, unmet or exceeded?
How would you describe your experience on our website?
On a scale of zero (unlikely) to ten (very likely), how likely would you be to recommend us to friends or family?
From one (unhappy) to ten (very happy), how would you rate your overall satisfaction with the finished project?
What, if any, products, services or features are we missing?
On a scale of one (not easy) to ten (very easy), how easy was your experience?
What would you change about your experience?
Collecting feedback is essential in order to take off your blinders and see your business through the perspective of your customers. After all, they are the most vital element of your business. Not only does feedback give you some insight on how to make your business better, but it also bridges the gap between you and customers by building relationships. Though you may not always receive positive feedback, know that this information will only help you in the long-run.
At trades.org we know how to grow your reputation and make you shine online. Our reputation management services collects feedback from customers, pushes it to your social profiles and helps you make a plan to improve your services. We want to see your business succeed and we know that customer satisfaction is a key part of that equation.