If you want your business to offer the best possible solutions to your clients' needs, you need to get inside their heads. How can you do that? User feedback.
According to one survey of small- to medium-sized business owners, 85% of respondents said that online feedback from customers has been beneficial to their business. By asking people to share their feedback, on everything from inquiring about a product to interacting with sales associates, businesses can get a better idea of where they are thriving and what weaknesses they need to work on.
If you're interested in using user feedback to improve your business, it's time to create and implement a plan to ask for it.
Here's what you'll find below:
- What is user feedback?
- Why is user feedback important?
- How to Get User Feedback
- How to Organize User Feedback
- How to Prioritize User Feedback
- Improve Your Business With User Feedback
What is user feedback?
User feedback is a collection of responses from a customer base about their interactions with a business and its products and/or services. You might ask customers to share what features they'd like you to add to your smart phone app, or you could ask clients to review your latest ebook. User feedback allows customers to share everything they like, dislike, or hope to see from a business and its products or services.
You've likely given user feedback yourself without a second thought. A waiter might ask how you enjoyed your meal, or perhaps you filled out a fast food survey after reading on your receipt that you could be entered to win a cash prize for giving your thoughts. Maybe the fitness app you love used its social media accounts to ask followers what new features or workouts they'd like to see, and you shared your thoughts.
Businesses are constantly asking for user feedback, because it's essential to finding out exactly what your audience wants.
Why is user feedback important?
If you want to deliver the best products and services for your target audience, user feedback will help you do just that. User feedback is helpful for startups looking for insights to improve a product before launch, but even businesses that have been around for decades can benefit too.
Asking for user feedback shows you are engaged with your customers, which can help them feel more loyal to your company. But the main goal is to help your brand figure out what's working really well and what needs improvement.
For example, user feedback can help point out a glitch or bug on your website that your team didn't notice amidst lines and lines of complex coding. For legacy businesses, customers might love the brick-and-mortar store and suggest the company opens up for online orders.
On the flip side, maybe your online course has helped users boost their own profits. You were considering scrapping it, but user feedback shows that clients love the course and even want a part two, which could add another income stream for you.
How to Get User Feedback
- Focus Groups
- Customer Effort Scores (CES)
- Net Promoter Scores
- User Testing
- Feature Requests
There are many user testing methods for obtaining feedback from customers, including face-to-face interactions and putting out surveys.
As shown in the image above, let's discuss the top seven ways below.
1. Focus Groups
If you're just starting your business or plan on launching a new product or service, focus groups can help you work out any kinks along the way. This method involves selecting a small group of users to discuss their experience and thoughts with your business and what it sells.
There are many types of surveys to consider when asking for user feedback. You may include a survey after a customer interacts with your chat bot or calls your customer service line to share feedback on your company's customer service. This is also known as a customer satisfaction survey (CSAT).
You can include a survey link on product or service receipts, or you can send out pulse surveys to subsets of users periodically to see how they are enjoying the product or service. Another option is a retention survey, which helps you gather feedback from users if they decide to downgrade a subscription to a cheaper option or if they churn.
3. Customer Effort Scores (CES)
A customer effort score (CES) evaluates how easy or difficult it is for a client to use your product or service. You'll want to send the CES to a user about one to two weeks after they make a purchase, so they can quickly rank how much effort the product or service took from them on a scale of 1 to 5 or 1 to 7.
If the score shows the product or service is difficult to use, then you can take steps to determine how to make it easier for the end user.
4. Net Promoter Scores
Net promoter scores (NPS) help you gauge whether or not a customer would refer you to others. Because word-of-mouth referrals can help businesses generate new leads, it's important to find out if your users are willing to spread the word about your company, and if not, what's holding them back.
5. User Testing
When you launch a new product or service, recruit a group of users to test it out and provide their honest feedback. You can use the responses to improve any weaknesses before hard launching the product or service.
For direct feedback, consider scheduling individual interviews with customers to get their open feedback. This will take more time than sending out batches of surveys, but it can also offer more color to the data.
7. Feature Requests
Another form of user feedback is feature requests. This helps you identify new features to add to your existing goods or other new products and services to add to your lineup.
For example, several customers might suggest to their favorite pizzeria to add calzones to the menu. Because this new menu item requires similar ingredients to the existing pizzas, this could potentially be a low-cost and profitable option to include on the menu. Plus, the owner already knows they will be a hit, because so many diners asked for them.
How to Organize User Feedback
If you have a large audience, you could end up with a lot of data to handle. You can organize user feedback in spreadsheets or in a digital database, and there are many tools out there that can help organize responses to survey forms or sort customer effort scores.
Find (or build) a tool that integrates with your customer relationship management (CRM) system to help keep all the feedback in one easy-to-locate spot.
How to Prioritize User Feedback for Your Business
You don't want to add new features or products that users don't want. You'll need to prioritize user feedback when determining what changes to make to your business to ensure the adjustments will pay off.
Once you've collected the data into spreadsheets, tables, or other tools, you'll want to sort the information as positive, neutral, negative, and spam. This way, you can quickly look at negative feedback to determine what your weaknesses are and how to improve upon them.
When you're ready to add a new product or service, take a look at positive feedback to determine what features your customers like best, and try to implement what works into future goods and services.
Improve Your Business With User Feedback
User feedback is essential for fine-tuning product launches, improving existing goods and services, and innovating new features or items to meet customer needs. The result of collecting and analyzing user feedback can vary from more lead generation to improved customer service to increased sales … and so on.
User feedback is important to gaining fresh perspectives and growing your business. So be sure to create a plan to ask for and implement user feedback today, and you'll reap the rewards tomorrow.