In this guide, you will learn:
What is Customer Feedback?
Customer feedback is an information given from the audience about how company, product or service helped customers and met their requirements. There is no better and more reliable source of knowledge about the quality of company than customer feedback.
Why is Customer Feedback important?
#1. It points out aspects of your product that need improvement
You know your product by heart. It’s every feature and application that has been thought through and discussed by you and your team thousands of times. Unfortunately, that is why you might not see its imperfections.
It is important to know what suits the customers well, what was their least favorite aspect of it, and why. Showing that you truly listen to your customers’ opinions sells better than anything. After all, the product is made for them, so it should be as close to what they desire as possible.
#2. Listening to customer feedback makes customers feel involved and important
Nothing shows your customers that they are important better than asking for their opinion and acting accordingly. When asked for an opinion on a product or experience, your customers feel valued and treated almost as a part of the creative team.
By asking your customers to provide feedback you make them believe that their opinion is truly valued.
When the customers feel listened to, they begin to have positive connotations with your brand and direct their good experience back at you, which in turn could lead to more sales in the future.
One caveat: You must actually use collected opinions to make decisions and communicate them to your customers, otherwise, they will feel neglected. You can also read about the customer feedback loop which is an advanced strategy for constant product improvement based on users’ opinions and suggestions.
#3. Good feedback generates personal recommendations
Word of mouth advertising is very successful, especially in inbound marketing where the customer comes to you, not the other way around. Referrals are the most effective, free way of advertising.
The study conducted by Kellerfay for the RewardStream, revealed that personal recommendations are the top motivation for purchase decisions, not just while finalizing the sale, but at every step of the purchase cycle.
This was true for ten different areas of trade, such as, for instance, traveling, banking and apparel. While other factors that influence customer’s decision like advertising or price comparison websites influence their decision only at one stage of decision making, recommendations were extremely important throughout the purchase process.
As the authors state: ‘Over 8-in-10 purchases influenced by a recommendation are influenced by people talking face-to-face.’
That means that on average, only 2% of people who turn to your company because of a recommendation, will do so due to what they have read on social media.
Face-to-face recommendations usually come from friends or family and can be even more convincing than those of experts in a given field. If you want to gain customers through recommendations, make sure that customer feedback is positive.
#4. It helps you convince the customers to come back for more
Every store can sell a product to a given person once. That does not mean that the customer will come back. While you can polish aspects such as quality, price, and advertising of your product by observing the competition and market, there are some things that only a customer is going to point out.
Feedback may reflect on the factors that you did not take into account before, such as free shipping, safe packing, polite and available customer service consultants, user-friendly website.
Although at first, you might not get just positive reviews, that unique customer insight will help you understand the concept of customer’s desired approach and result in happy, repeat customers.
#5. Even bad feedback can be used to sell the product
Especially nowadays, when the competition is just two clicks away, it is absolutely indispensable to tackle any problems and/or misunderstandings immediately. Unhappy customers who provide feedback should be seen as a chance.
These buyers could just write a bad review on your social media profile, or even worse, leave an anonymous comment on a forum.
Instead, they have decided to contact you and share the unhappy experience, expecting that you do something about it. Such feedback should be valued even more than the perfectly happy one.
It’s important to create an action plan to tackle the unsatisfied customers’ feedback in the first place. Contact the customer, address the issue, provide the exact date when you will contact them again, if the issue is more complex, and make sure that you compensate them for the unhappy experience.
Without such a plan, things can go badly when you receive negative feedback.
You do not necessarily have to give them a free product, but even a 5% discount at your store will make this overall difficult experience, look much more positive for the customer.
Chances are, the new client will give you another shot and a regular will treat it as a small mistake that should be forgotten.
Learn more about how to respond to negative feedback based on real examples.
#6. Feedback helps you acquire new customers
What is the first thing you do when you look up a company whose product you’d like to buy? Reading opinions. As we already mentioned, personal recommendations are more effective than online reviews, however, that doesn’t mean that the latter should be underestimated.
According to data collected by Invesp, 90% of customers read online reviews before visiting a business website and 88% of customers trust these opinions almost as if they were personal recommendations.
If you care about the quality of the online reviews, better keep your finger on the pulse. Ask your customers and website visitors about their opinion and react before it appears on the Internet.
#7. Listening to customer feedback helps you build loyalty for the brand
Actively asking for feedback from clients using customer feedback software and responding to their opinions create a sort of relationship that makes the purchase process more personal. The customers begin to perceive your company as a business created by friendly people who truly care about their experience.
Maintaining relationships with clients pays off. Instead of being just a company who sells quality products, you become their favorite company.
Benefits of Customer Feedback
#1. Improve your website
Improving website design is often the first step to utilizing customer feedback. Why? Because a solid website is incredibly important for almost any company so it’s easy to translate feedback into changes that boost the company’s revenue. If people don’t like your website they don’t want to do business with you. And we’re talking not only about colors – navigation, layout, searchability, and responsiveness are among crucial factors that affect people’s perception of your website.
Even if you test your website you can’t be 100% sure it looks and works well on all devices and browsers at all times. That’s why it’s worth researching how visitors assess your website. It’s especially important when you redesign your website. It can turn out that visitors don’t really like the ideas of your designer and prefer the old version or have great ideas about what to change.
Here’s example of such finding by one of Survicate’s customers: Nationale Nederlanden Investment Partners. They discovered that a redesign was a mistake and implemented a new design shortly. It was much better than the previous one.
Another way to improve the website and increase conversion rates, important for e-commerce, is making the purchase path as seamless as possible. You’re likely to see that even more than 70% of potential customers abandon carts. So ask them why they are doing it. Their answers will help you improve the checkout process and increase conversion rates and revenue quickly. Website exit surveys are the best for that, you can learn more about them in our guide to website exit surveys.
#2. Tailor the offer to needs of customers
Offering what people need is one of the keys to a successful business. It applies to all kinds of businesses, from e-commerce to services to SaaS. For e-commerce, it’s a matter of inventory. For services – a range of services. For SaaS – features of products and possible additional services. Building new features or expanding inventory without taking into account customers’ needs is risky.
That’s why you should ask your existing and potential customers what products, services, or features they need. You can learn that they need something you would never think of, like in this example of our customer. RaveNectar, a shop selling artistic T-shirts found out that what people want is not eg. hoodies or tanks but yoga mats and leggings. Go figure.
#3. Improve customer satisfaction
Who agrees with me that acquiring new customers is expensive? I bet many of you. We need to invest in PPC campaigns, social media, sometimes offline advertising or trade shows, etc. Not to even count costs like developing and maintaining a great website.
But here’s something to cheer you up. According to stats, a loyal customer is worth even up to 10 times more than their first order due to returning orders and referrals. That’s why we should make sure that customers stick to us. For that to happen, we need to know how satisfied they are and what we can do to make them love us.
That’s exactly what Net Promoter Score has been created for. Ask your customers how likely they are to recommend you and what are the reasons for their answers. Sometimes, even a few answers can show you what you should improve to increase customer loyalty or what works well already and is worth highlighting. Increasing customer satisfaction scores will allow you to spend more on customer acquisition and speed up the growth of your company.
Learn more about extremely important customer satisfaction metric Net Promoter Score.
#4. Understand how customers find you
Web analytics changed the way marketers work. We don’t have to guess anymore how people find our websites and what they do once they reach them. But wait a minute – there’s ‘direct’ traffic. People coming from different sources land there and sometimes it can be a big chunk of total traffic (30% is normal, although watch for spam). Plus, people googling for your brand somehow know it, right? How to learn how people end up on your website? Just ask them.
It’s important especially if you invest in offline campaigns promoting your brand or website – the results of this survey will show you how effective those campaigns are. Invest more in channels that bring you customers and cut spending elsewhere.
Free-to-Use How Did You Hear About Us Survey Template
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#5. Create more useful content
We’re living in an era of inbound marketing and content is the core of the inbound strategy. It helps you attract strangers to your website, convert them into customers, and even delight them afterward. On one condition: it’s great. It doesn’t have to be huge but it needs to be great. It means that it carries all information readers need, is well-written, and looks good.
How to check whether your content is great? That’s right – ask your readers. Their feedback will help you improve content. Result: more social shares and higher ranks in search results, which leads to higher traffic and more customers.
Free-to-Use Content Rating Survey Template
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#6. Validate buyer personas
Buyer personas are fictional characters who describe your customers. Creating buyer personas helps you frame marketing activities to attract certain buyer personas. But we create them based on assumptions and research. Validating them will show you if they are anywhere close to the truth.
For example, you can assume that your primary buyer persona is a marketing manager working at an e-commerce company (real buyer personas are more detailed but let’s simplify it for the sake of an argument). But when you run a survey and collect their answers, it turns out that the biggest group of your customer base are owners of small businesses. What does it mean? Maybe your assumptions were wrong. Knowing that gives you an opportunity to cater to the group that is most promising.
Free-to-Use Buyer Persona Survey Template
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How to get Customer Feedback
There are several ways of collecting customer feedback. They can be divided into two groups – collecting feedback on a website and all other techniques.
Collecting feedback on a website helps you engage visitors and discover problems they might be facing while browsing your website. To collect feedback on a website, use website surveys.
They allow you to collect feedback from all users who visit your website. Smart widgets don’t disturb visitors and provide you with lots of actionable feedback. You will easily find out what stops users from buying, how they assess your design or what their crucial characteristics are.
TIP: If you’re not sure what questions to ask in a website survey take a look at this article.
Also, you can use live chat to talk to website visitors and collect their feedback during conversations.
When it comes to collecting feedback on different channels, sending questionnaires via email is the most popular. But this technique can be used only to collect opinions of customers – you must know their email addresses.
Another problem – you shouldn’t expect high response rates – who has time to spend 10 minutes to fill out a questionnaire? A simple solution: use one-click email surveys to collect more responses. If you’re curious about how they work, take a look at this guide to email surveys.
Discover 4 ways how customer feedback helps with marketing goals.
Social listening is another way of collecting customer feedback and its popularity is growing. Why? It’s simple – not all users want to talk to you. Many prefer to share their thoughts on social media.
Sometimes they share positive news, sometimes pure frustration or anger. Social media monitoring will help you collect feedback from customers and react to their opinions.
Another great way to collect customer feedback is Live chat. The main purpose of live chat software is to help customers but talking to visitors is also a great way of collecting website feedback.
Visitors like sharing their thoughts when talking to a live person. There’s just one catch: you need to create information flows between support and marketing team to make feedback collected during conversations useful and actionable.
Take a look at the most effective methods to collect customer feedback based on your goals.
Best practices of collecting feedback
Collecting feedback is not difficult but there are some principal rules that apply to all feedback channels. Following best practices of collecting feedback will maximize not only the amount of feedback you collect but also its usefulness.
#1. Define a goal before starting collecting feedback
Some people make a mistake of jumping into collecting feedback with no clear goal. They just set tools up and see what they can find out. It’s not the best choice. You should define a goal first. It will lead you to choose the right technique and then the right tool. Example: If you want to find out how people assess your new website, you should probably choose website surveys. But if you want to discover what people are saying about your competitors on social media, you should choose social media monitoring.
#2. Choose the right technique
As mentioned above, the goal of collecting feedback influences the choice of a technique. Also, take into account your resources. If all members of your team are already working overtime, then you should look for a tool that requires as little effort to set up and handle as possible. In this is the case and you want to collect feedback on your website, then you should probably choose a website survey tool rather than live chat which requires constant attention and spare capacity.
#3. Make analyzing collected feedback a part of your routine
Feedback tools provide you with the most value when you regularly assess results, look for improvements, create new surveys, etc. Depending on the size of your company and the amount of feedback you collect, you might be able to spot trends in a matter of days after launching the survey. Making analyzing results a part of your weekly routine will help you make the most of collecting feedback.
Don’t be afraid to experiment. Example: if you’re using social media monitoring, try changing keywords from time to time. When you’re using website surveys, try different questions, and targeting options. Decided to use live chat? Then try different targeting settings and pre-defined messages. Experimenting will help you improve achieved results and research different issues.
#5. Turn conclusions into decisions
Analyzing feedback is also not enough. Draw conclusions and turn them into decisions regarding your offer, marketing communication, or website design. Then analyze feedback to track how people assess the results of those decisions. This iterative process will provide you with the best results possible.
Improve Google Remarketing with Customer Feedback
Remarketing is a popular word in the world of digital marketing. It’s based on a sensible idea – people who have already visited your website and know products are more likely to buy than people who have never seen your website before. In fact, statistics say that they are 4 times more likely to convert than new users
But showing the same ads to people who bounced right after entering the website and to those who added products to a cart would be ineffective. For this reason, you build sophisticated remarketing lists in Google Analytics. You create them based on data such as time spent on a website, a number of viewed pages, or certain events. But there is one more piece of information that can be useful and give you a competitive edge: feedback of visitors.
An answer to 1 or 2 simple questions might help you move a person to a totally different remarketing list that will address their needs or objections far better. It will make your Google remarketing campaigns more personalized and thus more effective.
Here are 3 ways on how to use customer feedback in Google remarketing.
#1. Discover stage in the decision process
You can’t help the fact that many people who visit your website are just not ready to buy. They might be comparing your prices and inventory to competitors. Some are even lower in the decision process – looking at different products to decide what products are in their reach and what really interests them.
Also, people might be willing to buy, just not at the moment. Maybe they need to save some money or are looking for Christmas gifts in October.
What do shops usually do? They show ads of the products visitors viewed during the last visit and sometimes offer discounts. Will it help convert a person who is comparing your products with the competition? Maybe. But will it help convert a person who doesn’t know exactly what to buy? Not really.
However, this person might be interested in a guide to choosing the right product, like ‘What laptop to buy under $1000’. Similarly, the person who wants to buy in a month won’t change their mind when you show them an ad 3 minutes after they leave your website. It’s better to wait for the right time and remind about your great offer when they are likely to buy.
#2. Likelihood to cross-sell
Imagine this scenario: a person is looking at washing machines in a store with home appliances. What does it mean? Well, there might be 2 main reasons: the person wants to replace the old washing machine or is renovating the apartment (or moving to a new one). Of course, there are people who look at washing machines just for fun but let’s leave them – they won’t buy anything anyway, no matter how hard you try.
I believe I don’t have to tell you that a bid can be much higher to bring back a person who might be looking for other equipment as well. You might also consider showing them ads presenting other relevant products or a guide to renovating a flat. As you can imagine, a person who simply wants to buy a washing machine to replace the old one won’t be interested in such content. Your ads should highlight low prices or vast choices because those are factors that convince the person to buy.
#3. What products are missing
Many people generally don’t like shopping and thus want to buy all they need in one shop. If you don’t offer something they want they might not buy anything at all.
When you know which currently unavailable product a person expects from you to offer you can roll out a tailored Google remarketing campaign when you start selling this product. As you can imagine, such a remarketing campaign can be much more effective than usual ones based on page views or events.
Plus, feedback on your inventory can help you adjust the offer to needs of visitors so the sales will go up. A simple example: a shop selling t-shirts might learn that visitors would love it to offer sweatshirts as well. Take a look at a case study of Rave Nectar to see how eCommerce companies can use results of such survey to meet the needs of visitors better.
As you see, incorporating customer feedback into Google remarketing campaigns can help you better adjust bids and thus decrease CPA. So here comes a bit more tricky part – how to collect feedback from visitors and turn it into new Google remarketing lists?
Let’s begin with collecting feedback from visitors. You can use a tool like Survicate to do this. Target smart widgets to ask the right questions at the right moment. If you want to choose another tool, make sure it has the following features:
- Targeting advanced enough to meet your needs (useful targeting options: exit intent, new v returning visitors, % of scroll etc.)
- The possibility of running surveys on both desktop and mobile devices (important especially to ecommerce, customers tend to research on mobile and purchase on desktop devices)
- Integration with Google Analytics (you won’t be able to build custom segments and retargeting lists without it)
The second step is to set up a Google Analytics integration to create custom segments based on collected answers. Here you can see how setting up Survicate Google Analytics integration and creating segments looks.
The third step is to create surveys that will provide you with information useful in Google remarketing campaigns. The three described ideas are a good point to start but you might observe other interesting use cases. Also, remember that you can create lists based on a combination of collected answers.
Example: a person wants to buy just a washing machine but in 3 months from now. Assigning them to a remarketing list combining data from examples 1 and 2 will be much more effective than sending the person to one of the lists. All you need is just another segment of people who answered in a certain way to several questions.
As you see, collecting and analyzing customer feedback is important as it helps you not only get to know your customers better but also increase their engagement and loyalty, as well as acquire new customers. So it turns out customer feedback is quite important, isn’t it?