Customer Experience News & Trends

6 steps to better customer feedback

Customer feedback can help improve every aspect of your operations — if you gather, analyze and actually use it well. Here’s how to do it:

Every company gathers feedback — once a customer compliments or complains about something you have feedback. Many companies don’t do much with that feedback, and thus end up with more complaints than compliments.

To get useful feedback and then use it to please customers and generate revenue, try these six steps:

  1. Set goals. Don’t just write a survey because you know you should find out what customers want. Before you start a conversation, know what you want to collect from it — perhaps what they think of a potential new product, how they feel about your sales cycle or why they browse online but don’t order much. Knowing what you need to uncover will help you design questions to get the answers that will be helpful.
  2. Pick your communication channel. Which customers (or potential customers) do you want to reach? Contact them the way they contact you most — is it via social media, the telephone, written survey responses, email?
  3. Use the right tool. If you need just surface feedback — i.e., a satisfaction rating — use a poll. But you probably can’t rely on a one to five scale for in-depth feedback. To get a full view of how customers really feel, you’ll want to give them opportunities to open up — with open-ended questions, comment space and time to share their experiences.
  4. Cast a wide net. Make it easy for customers to give you feedback anywhere, anytime. Unless you’re doing a survey limited to a certain level of customers, put your survey everywhere customers are — your website homepage, shopping cart, paper invoices, service and sales pros’ email signature lines, etc.
  5. Respond quickly. Close the loop with customers after they’ve taken the time to give you feedback. Call, text or email to thank them for the feedback. If they indicate a problem, address that immediately. Don’t wait until you analyze their data with everyone else’s.
  6. Announce changes. When you’ve decided on what changes you’ll make as a result of the feedback, let colleagues and customers know what you’re doing and why so they support the efforts.

Subscribe Today

Get the latest customer experience news and insights delivered to your inbox.