What Makes Feedback ImportantMay 3, 2018
Business owners will likely have heard all about how customer feedback is vital to running an organisation, but people rarely explain how these things actually help. Put simply, if you want to retain customers, develop bigger and better products and keep a finger on the pulse of your industry, you need a well-built, reliable and responsive feedback system. Companies that fail to implement these feedback systems are effectively isolated from market and consumer trends, and completely blind to the outside perception of their company.
The most notable reason for improving your feedback process is that customers will have problems with your products or services, regardless of how good they are, and contact your business for your assistance. In a company with a good feedback process, complaints and queries go to a dedicated support team who can handle the customer’s problem quickly. If the problem is solved within a reasonable time, the customer won’t feel any need to stop using your products or lose faith.
But in a company where customer support is poor or nonexistent, things are different. The customer can be kept on hold for a ridiculous amount of time, the support team may have other priorities besides customer support which distracts them, the support team may be unhelpful or rude: these things, and other potential factors will drive customers away. The customer can also spread the word on how bad your customer support is, driving potential customers away.
Another thing that good customer support grants a company is the ability to identify issues and bugs with your products or services. Customers can be better quality assurers than your own company sometimes, as they have way more time to use your products and identify issues, but they can only bring these issues to your attention when there’s a support network that can pick it up. Without that finger on the pulse, you don’t know how good your products or services are until it either drives customers away or, in a worst case scenario, hits the press and drags the company’s reputation through the mud.
And perhaps the biggest stumbling block for companies with a poor feedback process is that they can’t see which way the wind is blowing in the market. There are too many companies that sank into irrelevancy when they failed to react to new consumer trends, thinking that their old products with a new coat of paint will appeal to a changing market. While there are many avenues for figuring out what customers want, like trade magazines and other press sources, the best method is listening in on consumers discussing your products: what they want from your products. After all, the basic idea of focus grouping is figuring out what your target customer wants, and it’s best to ask the customer directly.
While feedback may seem like a wasted effort to many business owners, it’s a vital lifeline to customer and client-facing businesses. Having no opportunities to receive feedback will leave you deaf, dumb and blind to wider market trends and product deficiencies, so getting it right and treating it seriously is key to keeping your company sustainable and stable in the long term. At Soft Intelligence, we’re passionate about gathering feedback and ‘soft intelligence’ from your clients and customers, transforming it into straightforward and accurate data that turns the hassle of feedback processing into a breeze. Take a look at our feedback apps and see if your company would benefit from them.