Seeking feedback from customers is also effective in your business finding out whether you receive any referrals or recommendations from your previous customers. Get into a habit of creating a formal document to survey a handful of customers every month and you will be rewarded with tremendous insight into what your customers think of your approach to business.
It is important to ask questions that evoke a response from your customer base and not just a simple, ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer which cannot be measured as effectively. Questions that are left open for the customer to give a detailed answer to are the most effective, as you can act on their negative, or positive feedback.
Why Gain Customer Feedback?
Listening to your customers and allowing them the chance to present their views is one of your most powerful weapons if you want to create positive customer experiences. According to studies, over 62% of consumers are more likely to buy from a brand that has asked for their opinion. It shows them that their opinions matter, are valued and put into action by the company itself. Feedback, no matter whether it is positive or negative, shows you what your company is doing right and where there is room for change. Afterall, it is better for your customers to provide you with criticism directly rather than on a review, that can be seen by everyone online.
Customer feedback helps improve your business by solving problems, showcasing your strengths, better understanding your customer needs and testing new products, services or strategies for the future. Here are some key questions to ask your customers when buying a product or service from you.
1. What Made You Decide to Do Business with Us?
This will help uncover the reason the customer brought from you and have chosen you over your competition. It may be that they find your products are irreplaceable, or the service you provide is difficult to replicate anywhere else. By asking this question you are triggering a response from your customer base and asking them to seek out the real reason they prefer the products and services you offer. Knowing this can help you develop your Unique Selling Point, pricing strategy and differentiate your business from the competition.
2. What is a Recent Example of How We Exceeded Your Expectations?
This question not only boosts company morale but places the customer in a happy state of mind, triggering their most favourable memories of doing business from you. Perhaps it is the card you sent in the post for their birthday, or friendly customer service over the phone. Answers will enable your business to understand what your customers love about you the most.
3. What is the Most Valuable Part of Doing Business With Us?
This question helps your company understand what your customers expect when interacting with your business, and where to best focus your support efforts. It could be anything from quick customer query response times, to sending out personalised gifts and supporting your customers by giving them multiple ways to contact you when they have any queries or concerns about a service or product.
4. What Can Our Company Do to Serve You Better?
It only takes one bad experience for a customer to stop using your products and services entirely. Focus on how you could make their future experiences better, by asking them what they want to see from you. Perhaps, they are looking to be offered a loyalty card, quicker service time or a longer product warranty. Show your customers you are actively listening and value their time and input.
5. Would you Refer or Recommend us to Another, and if so, Why?
This is the ultimate question to ask to measure customer levels of satisfaction with your company’s products and services. It will also help with your Net Promoter Score which is an index ranging from -100 to 100 and measures customer recommendations for your products and services gauging overall customer loyalty to your brand.
Customer Feedback Responses
Always consider the different types of customer feedback responses to determine how useful your responses are and whether they are easily quantifiable. Here are a few different responses you might use.
- Open-ended – These are questions that cannot be answered with a simple yes or no. They ask for a detailed description of their experiences to help you understand customer interaction levels and satisfaction rates.
- Options – These responses are limited to a predetermined list of answers, so think carefully about the answers you provide to the question and whether they will be of use to you in the long-run. You may want to split each question into a category or separate heading to get the most out of your answers.
- Yes or No – These questions give you the chance to ask your customer directly about the services and products you provide and are guaranteed an honest answer. Follow up with a more detailed question afterwards to check they have answered correctly.
- Sliding scale – This type of response turns a customers feelings about an interaction into a numbered scale so date can be more easily monitored and evaluated. The scale is usually from 1-10 and you can use different variations of “satisfied”, “neutral”, “unsatisfied” or “agree” and “disagree” as examples.
Feedback in business is crucial for growth and improvement. It is beneficial for any business to take a closer look at what is working and what could be done to improve on a regular basis by conducting customer surveys, monitoring and evaluating NPS scores and checking in on your existing customers from time to time.