It may not surprise you that 77% of customers have a more favourable view of brands that ask for customer feedback, according to a 2017 Microsoft report. Despite clear evidence that customers truly value a feedback process, many businesses don’t make enough time for collecting their precious insight.

Companies make use of all manner of professional consultants, so it’s strange that many ignore such a rich source of information. In doing so, they risk becoming out of touch, and going out of business. Just a little digging around in the feedback box and that can all be avoided!

Customer Feedback

Why is Customer Feedback Important?

Aside from resolving grievances, feedbacks are useful for a huge number of things:

  1. Quality Improvements

Whether it’s a product or service, the desire to deliver quality is the same. Your website is a reflection of that pursuit. As good as intentions can be, mistakes are inevitable. Getting feedback from customers helps you to make measurable improvements to both product and presentation.

If customer experience (CX) is king, feedback is the royal decree. Using this powerful tool, you can discover the current limitations of your site, which could be structural (bugs, glitches) or contextual (poor content, suboptimal SEO). Businesses rarely know what their customers are struggling with unless they establish a clear system for feedback.

  1. Value Customers, increase Retention

The decision to choose one business over another can be extremely close, so showing potential customers that you value their input is another way in which you can get the edge. When customer feedback is in place, a company appears more open-minded, caring and approachable. Like it or not, people choose brands they feel most connected to.

Feedback shows that you proactive with the CX, as well as indicating you actually value customer opinion. “68% of customers will spend more money with a brand that understands them and treats them like an individual,” reads Khoros 2021 research.

If you’re having trouble relating to your audience, a specialised SEO agency can help you create a brand voice. This can quickly make a client base loyal, in turn creating more business through recommendation.

  1. Better Understanding of Customers and Market

Asking for feedback, whether through incentivised survey or customer service channels, will help you understand the customer much better. It allows a business to explore the customer ideology, not just raw data and trends.

Market research can help you to create an accurate buyer persona, though the characteristics often rapidly change as new trends emerge. Direct feedback will help you further define your target audience, both their tendencies and preferences. It can also speed up your innovation, informing you on potential future market trends.

How to Manage Customer Feedback

Whether it’s embedded forms on a website, social media comments or a dedicated software, managing customer feedback isn’t always as straightforward as one would hope. There are, however, some things you can do to simplify the matter, and make your feedback work harder.

  1. Segment Customers

Not all buyers are equally familiar with your business, thus their feedback will differ. Segment your customers into cohorts, defined by such things as purchase frequency, spending amount, or subscribers. This way, your feedback is even more powerful, providing you with specific contextual insight.

There are various types of feedback – survey, review, complaint form, focus group – so information will already be segmented in this way. You can find particular information by using certain feedback with a customer segment.

  1. Categorise Customer Feedback

All feedback is valuable, but some proves more important than others. For instance, a complaint needs to be dealt with before a suggestion. Having a system for categorising your feedback aids in the streamlining of your business, by allowing you to forward it to those most relevant.

An added benefit is that it makes your feedback more actionable. You know precisely which items are high-priority, and those that will likely have the largest impact to CX. To make life easier, you could use an integrated tag feature, so customers can label their own feedback, or a feedback menu that saves time for everyone.

  1. Create a Closed Feedback Loop

With feedback, the clue is in the name. Within digital marketing, unresolved feedback is a big no-no. Customers will quickly spot the façade of a disconnected feedback system, whether that’s not getting a response to your issue, or just recognising a business doesn’t actually consider your opinion

To benefit from customer insight, as well as cultivate a meaningful relationship with buyers, you need to create a feedback loop.

  • Presence: reply to all comments and reviews, good or bad, with useful information and professional tone
  • Advocacy: Reward loyalty with discount codes and incentive the recommending of your product/service. Having a mere 12% of customers advocating your business can double profits, according to the London School of Economics
  • Personal Touch: Let customers know if their feedback has had a positive effect on the way things are run, thanking them and maybe even offering some reward

If you don’t close the feedback loop, you’re effectively ignoring customers. A reply may seem insignificant but it provides true resolution.

Final Thought on Customer Feedback

Neglecting customer feedback is a mistake businesses simply cannot afford to make anymore. Practically all business decisions should be made in order to either better the customer experience or the product/service itself. Customer feedback, it just so happens, is the best tool for the job.