How to ask your customers for feedback

Customer feedback is essential so your business can grow and become more profitable

Customer feedback about your business can sometimes be difficult to hear but it is essential if your business is to adapt, grow and become more profitable.

Honest feedback is exactly what your business needs if you are to listen, learn and adapt your business to your customers’ needs, and ultimately become more profitable. Key benefits of customer feedback are detailed below.

Improve your relationship with existing customers

Asking your customers’ opinions demonstrates to them that you’re interested in what they think and that you want to keep them happy. Existing customers are one of your most valuable assets because they are more likely to buy from you than new customers, so it pays to listen to them and keep them content.

Your survey should give current customers the opportunity to tell you not just what they think of your products and services, but what else they would like to buy from you or what changes they would like to see in the services you offer.

Market to new customers

A customer survey can provide you with positive feedback, which you can then use as testimonials when marketing to new customers.

Testimonials are powerful marketing tools because they offer a third-party endorsement for what you do, which can add to your credibility.

Develop new products

A customer survey could also help to create new ideas for products or services. If a proportion of clients wanted the same product or service, this might highlight an unfulfilled need or an area where your products are lacking.

How to get feedback

Feedback can take many forms, depending on the nature of your business. Methods of collecting feedback could include comment cards at your point of sale, an online survey, a feedback form sent out with every purchase, in person or over the phone.

You may need to offer more than one way to give feedback as some people may prefer to fill out an online survey whilst some may prefer to receive it and return it by post.

If you find that people still aren’t providing feedback, you may need to offer an incentive, for example being entered into a prize draw. Also note that some people may prefer to give honest feedback anonymously, so you should always give them this option.

SeeĀ nibusinessinfo’s guide onĀ market research and market reports.

Getting external help

There are some benefits in employing external expertise:

  • customers are more likely to participate in a survey and be more honest with a third party
  • you may need assistance to develop an effective survey that asks the right questions in the right order
  • you may need help understanding and analysing the feedback
  • a third party can give you an objective perspective on the feedback and provide you with an action plan for how to address the issues raised