Love it or hate it, customer feedback is essential for any business.
It’s one of the best ways companies can improve their products and services which, in turn, will boost the success of their business.
But not only that, feedback improves the Customer experience (CX) as well. And by using Customer Feedback Management (CFM), you can make sure all of that important feedback is used to make changes that matter.
To show you how you can use CFM to improve your customer experience, in this article we’ll cover exactly what CFM is, how it can be applied to your business, and the tools you can use to get started.
- The Nuts & Bolts of Customer Feedback Management (CFM)
- CFM: The Basics
- What Drives Customer Feedback Management?
- Why CFM Needs to Be in Your Training Manual
- Why CFM is So Important
- Breaking Down the Process for CFM
- Get the Most Out of Your CFM With a Tool
The Nuts and Bolts of Customer Feedback Management
CFM: The Basics
Simply put, CFM is the process of collecting customer feedback and making changes in your operational processes, for the better.
By welcoming customer feedback in your company, you can manage and use it to improve several processes in your business. Customer feedback can be used to improve the operational side of your business like product management, customer support, sales, and account management.
How? If you gather feedback from people who actually buy your product and put it to use, you effectively turn your company into a customer-centric business.
And that can be extremely positive for boosting revenue and customer satisfaction:
And because CFM is essentially collecting customer feedback, analyzing that data and figuring out what’s best to do with the results, it’s not that different from other data analysis.
The best part about CFM is, no matter how big (or small) your company is, every piece of individual customer feedback can be analyzed. CFM is always in real-time, and in today’s fast-paced business world, you need to stay on top of what everybody is saying.
What Drives Customer Feedback Management?
Just like any other process you’ve put into place in your company, CFM is driven by your own business objectives.
For example, if you’ve just released a new product and you’re worried about how a certain feature will be received, you can use CFM to analyze specific feedback and decide what action to take next.
Or, if your goal is to retain customers, you can look at when customers decided to stop using your product and why.
Feedback can be analyzed in a number of ways, but CFM generally focuses on polls, surveys, and feedback analytics. Because CFM software draws data from all three sources, you’re left with a comprehensive view of what your customers really think.
Why is Customer Feedback Management Training Important?
If you’re considering implementing CFM in your business, your team needs to be trained on the importance of the system. For CFM to be successful, you need to be consistent, make sure you’re collecting the right data, and that you know how to analyze and interpret that data.
Putting your team through CFM training can increase their knowledge on how the system works, and open their eyes to the importance of what CFM can add to your business.
There’s no denying it. Businesses who use CFM are able to achieve lower customer churn and ultimately higher revenues from customers.
How? Because keeping existing customers on board is a lot cheaper than finding new ones:
And at the end of the day, that means more money is being added to your bottom line.
Why CFM Is So Important
Now that we’ve gone through the basics of CFM, let’s dive into why it’s such a crucial process for your business:
CFM Can Help You Improve Your Products
Here’s the scenario: You’ve launched a new product or service to your market.
Months of market research have provided insight into what your potential customers are looking for and what they are willing to spend money on.
Launch day comes, you sell a bunch of products and then, the feedback rolls in.
It is only at this moment that you’ll truly discover the best bits about your product, as well as its downfalls. When your customers share their opinion, you need to listen, especially at the beginning of a product’s lifetime.
Using CFM, you can learn what’s working and what needs improvement. No matter how many industry experts you have on your team, nothing beats customer insight about your product. Customers aren’t biased and they haven’t poured their heart and soul into a product.
They’ll give you an honest answer. If you take the time to listen and evaluate why they provide certain feedback, you’ll be able to build a product that can address their concerns and meet their expectations.
CFM Can Keep Track of Customer Satisfaction Levels
Customer satisfaction is crucial to reducing customer churn.
But how well are you tracking it?
Customer satisfaction and its benefits go beyond just putting a smile on your customer’s face. The satisfaction levels of your customers can be linked to higher revenue for your company, because satisfied customers are willing to spend more money on your products:
So it’s crucial that you keep customers happy. One of the best ways to find out if they are is by using CFM.
Rating-based questions are a good place to start and can provide your company a rough idea of how happy your customers are. But you should also keep an eye on your Net Promoter Score (NPS):
Your NPS is based on a single question: “How likely are you to recommend this product to a friend or family member?”
Customer responses are then measured on a scale of 0 – 10. Using this score, you can very quickly find out how many people are willing to recommend you to others.
CFM Tells Your Customers That You Care What They Have to Say
One of the best ways to build a loyal client base is to show them that you care and that you listen to what they have to say:
By inviting customers to provide feedback and help them shape your product or service, you are inadvertently building a stronger relationship with them at the same time.
If you’re looking for a surefire way to boost your NPS rating, this is one of them. The cheapest (and best) way to get new customers into your sales funnel is by word-of-mouth. Telling your customers that you value their feedback and input is one way to get them involved in the success of your brand.
CFM Boosts Your Customer Experience (CX)
50 years ago, people would buy what advertising told them to buy.
Now, customers base their purchasing decisions on experiences they have with brands, products, and services. And, they want to fit in.
Ever wonder why so many people walk around with Nike merchandise? It’s no coincidence. People want to show that they belong to a particular group.
What this means for your brand is, if you provide your customers with an amazing customer experience whenever you can, you can build a truly loyal client base for your business.
The best way to do this? Ask them what they love. Ask them what they hate. Ask them what you should be doing better. And use the feedback to improve your products, brand, and customer experience.
CFM Cuts Customer Churn
If a customer likes your brand and your product, they’ll stick with you. But if they’re unhappy or they’ve had a bad customer experience, once they find someone else who can solve their problem, they’re gone.
It’s harsh but the reality of the modern sales world is, there is no room for error when it comes to customer service and experience. Apart from a poor onboarding experience, a bad relationship with your customer or poor customer service are the main reasons for churn:
Using CFM, you can understand what customers love and hate about your product or brand. That way, you can focus on the good and address any issues before it’s too late (and your customer switches to a competitor).
If you act on feedback immediately, not only will you fix a customer’s problem, but you’re also likely to win loyalty points in the process.
CFM Helps You Make Business Decisions Quicker
No matter what market you’re in, you need to make decisions quickly and act in the best interests of your business at all times.
CFM is one of the only ways you’ll be able to get data-driven feedback about what your customers want, what’s working, and what’s not.
If you have the correct processes in place, this is one of the quickest ways for you to adjust your product offering to what your customers are asking for.
Because customers aren’t biased or tied to an opinion, their feedback is an honest source of data for your company. You can use this to your advantage by figuring out what product or feature your customers want most, and allocate your budget accordingly.
Breaking Down the Process for CFM
Your specific process for collecting and managing customer feedback will depend on your end goal.
First, you need to figure out how to actually collect feedback.This can be anything from analyzing specific customer accounts to collecting data on a product feature.
We’ve broken down the process into three main steps:
Step 1: Consistently Collect Customer Feedback.
The first step of implementing a CFM process will be to collect ongoing, real-time feedback from your customers. This will provide a consistent flow of data-driven information you can use later to make informed decisions.
To do this, you should make it easy for customers to provide feedback. This might include directly asking them for feedback, getting them to fill out a survey or poll, or allowing them to provide reviews on your website or review sites.
Whatever option you decide to use, make sure to get customers involved at every point possible. That way, they know their concerns and needs are being listened to at every stage of their customer journey.
We recommend that companies ask customers one, open-ended question. This allows them the freedom to say what they really care about and how it relates to your product, good or bad.
With traditional surveys, customers may be lead towards providing an answer that may not be what they truly feel. With one open-ended question, though, like “How was your experience with our product?”, customers can take the response in any direction they want.
Step 2: Put Feedback Back Into Your Business
Once you’ve started to collect feedback, you need to make use of all this data.
Is there something that’s just not working? Are you moving towards your company goals, or is the customer’s experience being halted at a certain point in their journey?
Look at all the feedback and make an honest decision on whether or not you need to make an improvement.
Using a software platform that helps you collect, manage, and interpret customer feedback can help you make informed decisions, which leads us to the next step…
Step 3: Allow Customer Feedback to Drive Your Business Outcomes
CFM is a long term game, so you need to consistently measure and monitor anything and everything that relates back to your customers.
This means keeping a close eye on your NPS, your product turnover, and your customer churn. If you don’t know if your figures are on point or not, use an industry benchmark in your first years. Then, once you build up some stats of your own, you’ll be able to make judgments based on historical data.
CFM can allow you to drive all of these issues and your overall business outcomes because it gives you an understanding of what your customers want. And because all of that important feedback and data is in one system, you are able to identify what’s working and what’s not.
For example, let’s say you’ve recently launched a new product and you want to know how satisfied your customers are with various aspects of it. If you have the right processes in place to collect customer feedback, CFM is a great way to get a birds-eye view of what your customers really think.
A tool like Wonderflow can automatically collect and store data on a dashboard for you, so you aren’t messing about with Excel sheets. Then, you can easily evaluate data based on the features that matter most to your customers:
CFM with the Help of a Tool
Now that you know what CFM is and how it can help your business, here’s a list of the best tools to collect, manage, and interpret customer feedback.
The Best All-Around Tool: Wonderflow
CFM has a lot of moving parts, so the easiest way to have a successful process is to house data all under one roof.
Wonderflow gathers and analyzes customer feedback then adds it to an easy-to-use dashboard called “The Wonderboard”. The tool processes any type of customer data in the form of text such as Ratings and Reviews, surveys and customer center data, analyses it, generate meaningful insights. It allows business managers to access the voice of the customer anytime and from a single touch point.
No need to hire a market research agency anymore.
The tool can help you take a more customer-centric approach to your clients by predicting what your star rating or NPS will be if you decide to take certain actions. This means you can use The Wonderboard to make more informed and data-driven decisions.
The platform also lets you focus on rating and sentiment trends, popularity, and category trends. It can also compare your products against competitors, help you track important features you might be missing, and provide you with an overall insight about how well your product is doing.
It’s a no-nonsense way to get a clear view of what your customers really think, and a perfect way to edge out your competitors.
For Customer Satisfaction Feedback: Survicate
Survicate is a tool that collects customer satisfaction feedback through customized website widgets.
The widget can act as a survey tool that allows you to ask customers to fill out short feedback surveys or gather information about their experience with your products and service.
Although it’s main aim is figuring out how satisfied your customers are, the tool also identifies customer trends and behaviors so you can see what you’re doing right. It can act as a marketing tool as well. When a customer fills out a survey from your widget, you’ll get their lead profile that can be automatically filtered back into your CFM.
For Website Visitors: UserReport
If you want to implement a CFM process that focuses on your website, UserReport could be a good choice for your business.
It’s a visitor opinion platform where you can build feedback forms and customizable online surveys to get feedback from your website visitors. Once your surveys and forms have been filled, you can generate a report from UserReport to show user details like location and demographics.
The platform also lets you assign actionable items to your team members so they can handle the responses.
Happy Customers = A Boosted Bottom Line
No matter what industry you’re in or what your objectives are, you need to listen to your customer’s feedback.
Having a customer feedback management process is the only way to make sure your customers listened to at every stage of their customer journey. But listening isn’t enough. You need to value customer opinions, make informed decisions based on their feedback, and continue to ask them questions if you want to cut customer churn.
Listening to your customers and acting on feedback quickly and effectively is one of the best ways to build a loyal customer base. And a loyal customer base means more referrals, more customers through your doors and, ultimately, a higher revenue stream for your business.