As a service business, it is critical to listen to your audience and analyze their feedback to make sure your products and services meet their needs. Feedback from customers is a great way to get insights into how to improve your business and what new opportunities you may be missing. This applies to any service business AND at any point in the customer journey.
However, it can be challenging to track and collect customer feedback from various outlets. Fortunately, there are a variety of powerful customer feedback tools to help businesses gather, analyze and act on customer insights. In this blog post, we will take a look at the five best customer feedback tools for listening to your audience. We will discuss the features and benefits of each tool, helping you to make an informed decision when selecting the customer feedback tool that is right for you. Here is what we will be discussing:
- When to get feedback?
- What is the difference Between Customer Feedback and User Feedback
- What is a Customer Feedback Tool?
- The Commitment from Feedback to Action
- 5 Best Customer Feedback Tools
When to get Feedback?
So there are two key, but separate scenarios here:
- What are the situations you request feedback?
- When in the customer journey do you want feedback?
They are related but distinct, and both need addressing:
There are a few key situations when you should collect customer feedback. Some examples include:
- When you’re launching a new product or service and you want to know what they think
- After a major change or update to your existing offerings – to understand if these changes are for the better
- When you’re considering making a change to your pricing to see if demand will be affected
- Whenever you’re feeling unsure about your direction and confirm from your target customers if the changes are the right thing to do
The goal is to be constantly collecting feedback from your customers so that you can make the best decisions for your business.
Recognize that a customer interreacts with your brand over a time period. For example, at a hotel, the journey might start with online booking and end at check-out. There will be multiple touch points ie. contacts where a key impression of your business will be made, so it behooves a business to understand customer satisfaction at each of these. One feedback tool technique is journey mapping. An example of this for a retailer below:
What is the difference Between Customer Feedback and User Feedback?
This question sparks much debate! At its simplest, we like this definition:
Customer feedback is what someone says about your product or service,
User feedback is what someone says about their experience using your product or service.
User feedback is a subset of customer feedback, focusing solely on the customer experiences of using the product or service. These can be both on and offline. Staff feedback is also included to complete the view.
What is a Customer Feedback Tool?
A customer feedback tool is a software or hardware solution that enables an organization to collect, store, analyze and act on feedback. This type of customer feedback platform can be as simple as a survey tool that sends out emails to the customer base asking them for their thoughts and opinions, or they can be complex by incorporating artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning features to provide answers based on gathered data.. Additionally, ongoing customer feedback (often termed ‘longitudinal‘) can help businesses track customer satisfaction levels over time so provide an improvement assessment as changes are made.
Some of the more common types are shown below:
The Commitment from Feedback to Action – Do You Have It?
Without feedback, there is no measurement
Without measurement there is no understanding
Without understanding – there is no action
Without action – there is no point
Simply put – any feedback request is redundant if there is no commitment from the business to take action. More specifically, the action needs to be immediate or as near to this as possible. There is no point in asking for feedback after the event. If the customer is unhappy they will have already defected, posted a complaint online, and be immune to your appeals to return.
5 Best Feedback Tools?
This one is tough as there are many great programs out there, so we have a few for you to think about. The list below covers feedback for different use cases that can be used by any service business. We have discounted social listening solutions eg. monitoring Yelp – as these are very problematic. We think Opiniator is the most effective for service businesses as it allows on location, actionable feedback. However there are other solutions for different parts of the journey:
Uservoice: Best for product feedback, feature requests and product development
Markio: Online and website feedback – often through feedback widgets, though Google Analytics must also be used.
Poll Everywhere: A neat tool to get interactive live feedback at events
Opiniator: Yes we are biased! Our digital comment card enabled on the spot feedback for any service business, to obtain guest feedback in real-time. Moreover, the data, ratings and comments deliver actionable insights and immediately encourage staff to take action. By this we mean:
- Ask the right question at the right time, at any point in the customer journey
- With feedback options and conditional logic
- With multilingual surveys
- Delivering customized survey question types
- Quantitative feedback and qualitative feedback
- For real-time feedback
- Obtain an accurate customer experience
- With high response rates
- Smart alerts
- Issue tracking
- Review the data, confirm the trends
- Correct the issue
- Fix the hazard
- Improve the operation
- Connect with the unhappy guest
- Prevent negative online customer reviews
- Yet – encourage only positive online reviews in social media channels
- Enable photos to deliver valuable insights
- Benchmark or leaderboard all locations to confirm best in class operators
All through the same process:
Any customer feedback solution is better than nothing at all or gut feel. Customer feedback surveys are needed that should have a range of features that turn feedback into insights. Voice of the customer is too important to leave to chance. Any customer survey tool must have an easy user experience and deliver way more than customer sentiment, star ratings, sticky notes or sentiment analysis. We have looked at 5 tools and shared our thoughts on each.