Last Updated on May 30, 2019 by Dave Schoenbeck
As a small business owner, you know the importance of customer feedback. From validating a new idea to making pivots in your current enterprise, knowing what the people want (and what they don’t want) is a vital part of running a successful company.
Customer feedback is invaluable for the health of your business. Here are 4 benefits you’ll gain from collecting customer comments with customer satisfaction surveys.
1. Written, unfiltered feedback is more powerful than informal comments.
People say a lot of things – including a lot of things they don’t really mean. Sometimes, initial excitement can be deceiving. This is why it’s important to document uninhibited, thoughtful and authentic feedback from your clients.
When your customers don’t feel pressured to give an immediate response, they’re more likely to be completely honest. Moreover, if they’ve had some time to use your product or service and really contemplate their experience, their comments are that much more meaningful and accurate.
Keep in mind that while spoken comments can be helpful, written follow-up feedback gives you more bang for your buck. These comments can be saved for future and are easy to refer back to when you need them.
2. Repetitive feedback reveals more than just customer satisfaction or disappointment.
Patterns can tell you a great deal about the state of your business. Repeat comments illustrate trends – both good ones and bad ones. Being aware of what your customers like and what they don’t gives you the knowledge you need to make major decisions about how to run your company, what changes to make in your offerings, and how to utilize your staff.
3. Customer feedback helps you better structure your employees’ compensation.
As you learn more about the true value of your product or service, you can better tailor your employees’ pay structure to match your sales income. This is especially helpful if you’re venturing into hiring for the first time and are adding salespeople to your team.
Alternatively, you can structure your employees’ sales commissions to be determined based on customer satisfaction. If an employee is underperforming or has poor reviews from your clients, you can alter their pay to reflect their conduct. Or think of it another way. Incentives drive better performance. So if you link customer satisfaction results to their income, great things start happening.
4. Customer comments help you shape internal conversations about your business.
When you know your customers’ thoughts, you’re better able to make necessary changes within your business and discuss various strategies with your employees.
Start every team meeting with a discussion about what your clients are telling you. Give special attention to feedback from your key customers: these are likely your biggest buyers and their comments are worth gold. As the CEO, openly discuss your client’s feedback with them to get a clear sense of their feedback.
So how do you go about collecting this kind of information in an organized and consistent manner? How do you ensure you’re always gaining that invaluable feedback from your leads and customers to help you solidify more sales in the future?
Consider using one or both of the following 2 methods:
Solutions like SurveyMonkey or SurveyGizmo are great for running short, digital customer satisfaction surveys. Both platforms offer free starter packages and their tutorials are very helpful in constructing the first survey.
SurveyMonkey also gives you a few extra benefits that your current customers may not: you can poll an unbiased, targeted audience to get feedback for new ideas and validate them before even launching.
Sending out comment cards after a sale is another way to collect accurate data.
Someone in your business should be tasked with consolidating and interpreting feedback. As the CEO, you should decide what to implement and change.
Keep in mind that regardless of what method you choose, not all your customers will be keen to share their thoughts. Follow a few simple guidelines to get the most out of your customer surveys.
The statistics are clear: customer feedback from surveys can mean a lot for your bottom line. If you’ve been reluctant or nonchalant about incorporating them into your sales process, now is a great time to add customer feedback tools!
Interested in discussing how to drive better business results? For a complimentary online coaching session, just fill out my contact form.