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Harnessing the value of customer feedback

One of the most significant objectives that any business will work towards is ensuring customers are happy with the product and/or service they receive.

To achieve high levels of customer satisfaction, many businesses utilise feedback from customers to identify strengths and weaknesses in their service.

Customer feedback can come in many different forms. Whether it’s a testimonial, a Google review, survey responses or even comments made verbally, feedback (good or bad) should be reviewed objectively and actioned appropriately in order to improve your business.

The benefits of customer feedback

Highlight areas for improvement

Of course, first and foremost, feedback should be used as a tool for business improvement. It can give insight into many different aspects of your business including cost, efficiency, customer service, quality, and much more. These comments can subsequently be used in improving the performance of particular areas.

Celebrating successes

Receiving customer feedback isn’t all about where your business may be going wrong. It can also be a fantastic way to celebrate the successes of your team members. When you receive a great review or positive comments from a client, share these with your team and shout about it on social media (with your client’s permission).

Showing customers their value

In asking for feedback you are showing your customers that you value their opinion. This in turn greatly builds upon the relationship between the two businesses.

Improve customer retention

Happy customers make loyal customers. Therefore, in continually working to improve your offering from feedback you have received, you vastly increase the likelihood that your customers will stay with your business for longer.

Asking for customer feedback

It is an unfortunate reality for many businesses that customers are more likely to leave a review for poor performance over a great one. This is precisely why businesses should take a proactive approach to assessing customer satisfaction at regular intervals.

Whilst this can be done by simply requesting comments from your customers over the phone or via email, one of the most effective methods of gaining feedback is to distribute a survey. One of our favourite platforms is SurveyMonkey – a free platform that will allow you to seamlessly ask for feedback (up to 10 questions on the free package), which is then translated into usable data.

If you are looking for reviews to boost your business’ reputation (alongside rankings within search results), there are a number of simple yet powerful ways to encourage these. Tools such as TrustPilot allow you to reach out to your customers and request feedback at any stage of their journey through email invitations or social media. For a free option, Google reviews can be the perfect solution; creating a sharable link that you can promote on social media and even embed into your email footers.

You must be aware, however, that in providing an easy way for customers to review your business, that is published directly onto the platform, you also leave yourself open to any negative feedback that your customers may have, but this is all a part of the process.

Responding to feedback

As there are many different platforms on which your business can receive feedback, it is essential that you assign team members to monitor and respond to these.

Organic reviews, through platforms like Google or Facebook, are often the first things that a prospective client will look at when researching potential suppliers. Therefore, responding to all reviews (whether positive or negative) will highlight that you take a proactive approach to customer service.

When it comes to responding to negative feedback, we recommend that you thank them for their comments, apologise for any inconvenience caused, ask for further details if necessary and let them know what you will do to ensure this issue is resolved.

Putting your feedback into action

Any feedback received should act as an invaluable source of guidance for your business in moving forward and improving your products or services. With customer comments coming in, don’t overlook or prioritise one over the other as you could be missing out on important data.

How has customer feedback benefited your business? We’d love to hear from you on Twitter!

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