Considering that 79% of customers are more likely to make another purchase from a company that provides them with a good experience, it makes sound business sense to provide your own customers with the best possible experience.
Today’s customer experience is a complex mix of traditional and digital channels culminating in more customer touchpoints than ever before. Yet, it only takes a single bad experience at any one of those points to negatively affect how a customer feels about your brand and potentially prevent them from returning. Therefore, it’s vital to be able to collect, measure and improve the consistency and quality of the customer service you’re providing across all interactions. This is where the benefits of using online surveys to create customer feedback loops is hugely advantageous.
What is a Customer Feedback Loop and How Does it Help Customer Experience?
A customer feedback loop is viewed as one of the most effective strategies for service improvement. It’s based on the concept of customers leaving their perspective of the experience both the good and the bad, this feedback is then analysed and improvement actions are then taken, and the loop repeated.
The principle behind it is that by continually gathering, learning and applying your customers’ feedback, you’ll be able to deliver an ever-improved customer experience.
The Value of Using Customer Feedback Loops and How Surveys Help
From their first contact with your brand, to purchase, post-sales support, ongoing service and beyond, by applying feedback loops at each key stage of your customers’ journey it will keep you up to date with satisfaction levels and enable you to deal swiftly with any issues, complaints or suggestions customers have.
However, you will still need the right tools to gather, measure and interpret all this feedback data, if you’re to successfully carry out the improvements you need to make, and customer surveys are the ideal tools to facilitate this.
From an in-store or website feedback survey, to a post-purchase, satisfaction or Net Promoter Score survey. Whatever feedback you need you can create a survey to collect the data.
More and more businesses are leveraging application programming interfaces (APIs) to automatically trigger surveys at scale and create feedback loops at the point of experience, to gather data across multiple touch point from thousands of customers throughout their journey.
To learn more about the SmartSurvey APIs and how you can apply them, you might like to visit our guide to the SmartSurvey API.
How Survey Tools Benefit Each Key Stage of the Customer Feedback Loop
The Customer Feedback Loop is divided into three equally important stages which include gathering customer information, the learning stage following evaluation of feedback data and finally application, where actions based on these findings are taken to improve the customer experience. To be fully effective this feedback loop process should be continually reapplied.
Data gathering: the first part of the feedback loop involves collecting customer opinion. And there are a variety of ways of doing this depending on the touchpoint and stages of the customer journey you’re trying to measure. For example, while a post purchase survey administered via an offline channel or a QR code on a product might work well in-store, an evaluation survey administered via an email or SMS to measure customer satisfaction might work better following a support call. So, it’s vital to select the right survey templates, questions and distribution method if you’re to best maximise your response rates and the quality of feedback you can obtain. If you’re interested in getting more surveys running to gain feedback at each point of your customers’ journey, and need more information about different template types, sample questions and potential distribution methods, take a look at our survey templates and survey distribution pages.
Evaluation and learning: the data analysis stage is next and is essential, enabling you to identify the strengths and weaknesses in your customer experience.
From smart dashboards featuring real-time metrics and visually engaging and interactive graphics, to simple export and sharing capabilities. With the right analysis and reporting tools within your survey software, you can quickly identify patterns and correlations in your data and be able to see clearly any areas that need urgent attention.
For information about our own data analysis and reporting capabilities, you might like to visit our reporting & results analysis page.
Application and improvement: post evaluation, you now have the insights to make the improvements you need and strengthen your overall customer experience.
It’s good practice at this point to inform your customers about the improvements you have made. Not only will this demonstrate that you have listened to them, it will also give you the chance to thank them for their feedback. You can also provide anyone who was previously unable to participate the details of when you will next be collecting survey feedback – essentially kick-starting the whole feedback loop again.
Why Creating Surveys and Customer Feedback Loops is Good for Your Business
Your customers’ happiness is pivotal to the success and growth of your business. So, it’s essential you’re doing everything you can to maximise their customer experience, through listening and responding to all their requests and needs.
With the use survey software, you will be able to establish a solid customer feedback loop. Not only will this ensure that you’re regularly collecting feedback and are aware of what’s happening across all your customer touchpoints, it will also improve how you manage and respond to developing customer issues, helping you to resolve them before they become too serious.
Ultimately, companies that listen to and deliver what their customers expect will be more attractive to continue to to do business with. And given research expert Walker’s assertion that 2020 is the year when customer experience finally overtakes price and product as the key brand differentiator using tools like SmartSurvey to create the best possible experience for your customers is good economic sense.