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Businesses that do not pay much attention to customer feedback most likely do not have many customers. The relationship between a business and its customers is one of the most important criteria for the well-being of that business. In fact, the moment a company or business loses contact with its customers, it begins to decline. Sometimes, businesses lose their contact with their customers without realizing it, because the communication channels between the two parties is not always clear. The long and rocky communication channel between company executives and real customers usually leads to the distortion of the basic and valuable information received from the customer on the way to be obtained by the people in the higher organizational positions which reduces the feedback effectiveness.
How to collect customers feedback ?
A company’s services and products can be examined from different aspects and selected as the goal of customer feedback. After selecting an important feature or aspect to be evaluated, collecting information begins. Of course, this information will be useless if it does not lead to effective decisions in the right direction. In addition, data collection and analysis require the selection of appropriate strategies. Once these are identified, you can start collecting data and collecting feedback from customers.
Receiving feedback on a company’s product or service not only helps to improve the business process, but also allows the customer to perceive being noticed by the company, and build a stronger bond with that company as a result. This way of dealing with the customer increases their loyalty to the company and makes them more committed to your brand. Most importantly, customer feedback usually addresses important and fundamental weaknesses of the company about which the organization is not willing to listen; therefore, feedbacks increase the possibility of making decisions to eliminate those weaknesses and decisions are planned and implemented accordingly in this direction.
5 common ways to collect Customer feedback
1. Live chat
Businesses that are based on selling products or services on the Internet have one of the easiest ways to get feedback. It is enough to create a system to direct customers to a section for polling or providing feedback. Usually, one of the primary goals of an online business is to attract a wandering customer on the Internet and persuade them to enter the website. But this is the first step in convincing the customer to take the desired action, but staying on that website is more important than logging in. But how to keep the user on the website?
An effective way is to respond to customer needs in the simplest and fastest way possible. In fact, this is the philosophy behind creating frequently asked questions on most websites. It has been some years that Frequently Asked Questions section has become a standard section on all websites. The most important message of this part of the website conveyed to the customer is that the company has a clear understanding of their needs and questions, which usually leads to a faster solution to their needs or problems.
A better solution is to create an environment for users and customers to share ideas, problems, and provide solutions. This section, unlike the frequently asked questions section, is managed by the users themselves. It is also possible to quickly direct clients to the right direction to get the information they need by enabling online chats with consultants and backstage supporters.
Communicating with the customer via email is one of the classic and old ways of receiving feedback. In the past, emailing was the most advanced and newest way to communicate with the customer, but over time and with the replacement of better means of communication such as social networks, this tool has largely lost its effectiveness. However, there are still many people who can be reached via their emails and their feedbacks would be received. In fact, despite all the changes, email remains one of the standard ways to get feedback.
Collecting feedback via emails is especially effective when you have a mechanism to send emails and request feedback, as well as respond quickly to emails.
A more classic method than email is to collect feedback through surveys, which of course still works. Of course, this method has also changed over time. Previous paper and physical surveys have now been replaced with online surveys and can be effective.
There are at least two different ways to get information through a survey: short-form and long-form. The difference between the two is in the number of questions the customer is asked, which definitely affects the purpose and type of questions. To make surveys more purposeful and effective, only ask questions that are in line with your ultimate goal. In fact, every question should serve a very specific purpose. Questions should also be designed to avoid receiving additional and unimportant information.
To begin with, you can ask more general and broad questions about your services and products. For example, ask the customer about the quality or defects of your services and products. By doing this, customers may mention points that you had not even considered.
4. Phone calls
Sometimes, it is necessary to use older methods to get feedback. The truth is that the best methods are not always the newest and most advanced methods. Some businesses have a space where making phone calls is the best way to get feedback from the customer. Younger people are usually reluctant to call and give feedback this way. Therefore, the percentage of customers who use this method is much lower than others. Instead, a phone call is the most effective way to communicate with the customer and understand his needs and opinions.
Phone call is one of the most personal and intimate types of communication through which a company can interact with its customers. Telephone calls have advantages that other types of communication methods do not. For example, the tone of the conversation in the text disappears altogether although the tone is as important as the words and sentences that are uttered and contains the some messages and information. In addition, the customer is usually happy that he has been so important. Therefore, providing a way to provide feedback in the form of a direct and personal relationship can help increase customer loyalty.
Bear in mind that your main goal for contacting the customer should be to understand the needs and attitude of the customer. If the customer feels that the phone call is just one of the usual steps in providing services or some kind of advertising, or for any other reasons, a negative feeling is initiated in the customer, and all efforts will be wasted.
Therefore, it is better to consider the details carefully before using this method. For example, specify the best time to call. Additionally, the conversation you arrange should not be in a very specific and inflexible format.
5. Forums to receive feedback from the customer
In many workplaces, having a box for suggestions and constructive criticism is standard. Today’s version of this box can be considered the same as forums for receiving feedback where customers can record their feedback on the company’s services and products and start a conversation about the company’s services or products. Other users can comment in the same way or rate others who agree with them.
This atmosphere allows the company to find information from the customers’ perspective. Of course, you should note that customer feedback may not always be completely correct. However, this is a good way to communicate with the customer and collect their real feedback and realize their needs.
The identification of feedback strategies
Receiving feedback does not usually happen naturally. Most customers are not interested in providing feedback because they feel that their opinion is not taken into consideration. For this reason, it is better to set a specific period of time and after that period of customer’s relationship with your business, contact him via email. In this case, the possibility of receiving feedback from the customer is usually much higher and naturally helps to strengthen customer loyalty.
Collecting customer feedback and its analysis for executive decisions is the first step to creating high quality customer service. Customer service in today’s competitive, online, and to some extent automated world is critical to business success and directly enhances customer base and loyalty.