Customer feedback is a key component in the growth of any business or organization. In most cases, it should even be prioritized over marketing. A company’s ability to keep its current clients pleased will not only guarantee that they will return for the services, but it will also draw in new customers via referrals.
Whether positive or negative, feedback should be the primary jumping point for businesses to make changes and capitalize on what works. This article will discuss the benefits of customer feedback and how to best implement a feedback strategy.
Benefits of Customer Feedback
There are many different benefits to customer feedback for both a business and its clientele. Those benefits include:
- Improves customer experience
- Helps the business in its decision making
- Creates a sense of trust between the customer and the business
- Can be used for marketing to bring in new customers
Collecting Customer Feedback
Businesses can collect customer feedback in a few different ways. A few methods that an organization may use to collect input from their clientele are as follows:
- Long-form or short-form surveys in apps or on websites
- Phone calls
- Suggestion boards
There are a few means to collect user feedback with a quick turnaround time and that are more likely to yield results. As a matter of fact, one of the benefits of outbound sales is that this outbound sales strategy will often provide a company with instant input from customers. But what are outbound sales? It’s a sales method that often includes cold calling potential customers.
When collecting user feedback through a sales call, it is important to note a few outbound sales tips:
- Address potential customers personally
- Use a well-thought-out script
- Research beforehand
- Use results as evidence when pitching
These tips will create a better transaction for the customer that will sanction a better user feedback experience, as well.
The ACAF Feedback Loop
When it comes to strategizing an approach to customer feedback, the ACAF Feedback Loop is a great model to follow. ACAF is an acronym that describes the structure of the feedback loop: Ask, categorize, ask, follow up. Below, we explain each element of this structure.
“Ask” refers to simply asking the customer for their feedback. Questions should be based on what needs to be addressed within the company. A business may be curious about whether or not their customer service needs were met, or might want to know what patrons thought about the quality of the product or service. A business may also just be in the market for general feedback.
Whatever the question may be, customers should find it simple to answer. “Yes” or “no” questions or prompts for ranking aspects of service on a scale of “Good/Average/Bad/Poor” or “Strongly Agree/Agree/Disagree/Strongly Disagree” will provide customers with the simplest user feedback experience, making them more likely to engage.
Optional open-ended questions as a follow-up will also be useful for the business.
After receiving feedback, the data should be categorized. This can be done by answers, by specific issues within the company that they bring up, or by customer demographics. Categorizing data should also include separating complaints that were specific to certain customers.
Organizing this data will make the process of evaluating and implementing user feedback more efficient. A business should always organize their data in a way that is suited for their particular needs.
The next phase in this model is to act. After receiving feedback from customers, there are a few actions to take that will ensure that the feedback strategy is yielding the most possible results.
The first step is to address the individuals who have given feedback. Their engagement will always warrant a “thank you,” and apologies are due for any unsatisfactory experiences that they conveyed about the company. Offering credit or a free gift is a safe way to make customers feel that a business values the quality of their experience before anything else.
Then, it is time to take all of the data from the clientele and implement the necessary changes to ensure productive business growth.
Following up with customers is a great way to show them that they are cared. This will make customers feel as if the business is actively listening and taking steps to improve their experience. Making changes within the company in accordance with customers’ advice will make them feel valued and may establish a personal relationship. Not only will this ensure that they continue their patronage at the company, but it could lead to referrals.
User feedback is just as important for customers as it is for a business. Buyers should never feel as though their experiences are being neglected, and it is a business owner’s duty to give them an opportunity to give their true opinions about the offered services.
Taking those opinions into consideration is a step in the right direction. This will keep customers loyal to a business. Investing in feedback will yield just as many, if not more, results than sales/marketing that is done without feedback in mind as current clientele recommends the products to new customers.