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How to Effectively Manage Customer Feedback and Implement It into Your Business Strategy

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Customer feedback is the bloodline of any business. Without customers, there are no sales and revenue. And without feedback, there’s no business growth. To improve your business strategy, you must learn how to effectively manage your customer feedback. How could customer feedback be used? And why is it important?

According to a report by Zendesk, 84% of buyers claimed that customer service is one of the factors that affect their purchasing decisions. Hence, customer service can make or break your brand awareness, engagements, and target sales and revenue. If you want to know what to do with customer feedback and how to handle it efficiently, read below.  

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Maintain a Good Track Record

In any business, there’s nothing more rewarding than receiving positive customer feedback. Having good user reviews is a great marketing strategy. No matter how eye-catching your marketing ads, websites, and social media posts are, customers are unlikely to trust your brand if they can’t see any engagement. 

As revealed from a study by BrightLocal, 93% of consumers will read reviews to determine a product’s quality. This is why customer feedback matters. 

Here are some ways to help you maintain a stellar review record:

  • Personalize your response but don’t overdo it to the point where you sound insincere.
  • Avoid putting up fake reviews, as this may lead to suspension of your online business accounts. 
  • As much as you want to keep a record of positive feedback, you shouldn’t remove negative reviews on your site. After all, negative reviews contain valid points that will help you improve your products and services.
  • Provide informative materials to efficiently help your customers with their purchasing journey. You may upload videos or publish blog articles on your site. 

Don't Let Negative Feedback Bring You Down

No business is perfect. As much as you want to create faultless strategies, challenges are bound to present themselves from left and right. One of these hurdles is receiving negative reviews. While negative feedback can make you feel defeated, it just might be the solution to your problems.

Having a few negative reviews is good for your business. They help your customers reach informed purchase decisions. When all they can see are positive reviews, they might question the authenticity of what you’re selling. More importantly, bad reviews help you pinpoint unsuccessful strategies and change them to see what works for you and your brand.

If you’re unsure of how to proceed, here are ways to handle negative customer feedback:

  1. Give a prompt response to resolve issues quickly.
  2. Don’t get defensive and angry right away.
  3. Empathize with the customer and always answer in a polite tone.
  4. Know that ignoring bad reviews makes you look like you don’t care about your business.

Respond to Customer Feedback

One of the most effective ways to create relationships with your customers is actively responding to what they say. It makes them feel valued and encourages customer loyalty. As shown in the recent survey of Bazaarvoice, 41% of customers said that they feel that the company cares for them when their reviews are answered. Moreover, customers appreciate timely and personalized replies. 

As your business grows, it’s becoming easier to use tools that automate tasks. Using chatbots is one example. Chatbots are computer programs that simulate conversations with humans, providing instant and easy information. However, there are concerns that this mere technology can’t answer.

So, take time to talk to your customers conversationally. Carefully understand their concerns and provide realistic solutions. When you resolve what’s bothering them, continue to offer help. This is one of the best ways on how to use customer feedback to improve service. 

Ask for Feedback

There are several methods to check how far you’ve come along in your business. When trying to gauge your business performance, asking your customers for feedback can be an insightful and, not to mention, inexpensive way of knowing where you’re at. This approach is also useful when launching new products or services. 

To ask for feedback, you may do concept tests and send your products to selected customers. Ask for their opinion regarding the packaging, quality, and usefulness of your product. You can also tell them to send the feedback whichever platform they like—email, social media, text messaging, or even through calls. This method will give you the opportunity of creating something that impacts your existing and potential customers. 

Even established companies understand why customer feedback matters. Here are a few of them that do product testings:

  1. Johnson & Johnson (JJ Friends and Neighbors)
  2. McCormick & Company Inc.
  3. Marie Claire Magazine
  4. Microsoft Testing Panel

Allow Customers to Share Innovation Ideas

Who says strategizing is only exclusive between company members and business partners? Aside from the fact that you can turn your customers into brand advocates, you can also collaborate with them for product innovations and ideas. For example, if you want to create products that benefit people with a public administration degree, you can encourage your customers to share their designs and creations.

They may share it on a special survey form on your website, or you can do live videos on social media to gather real-time suggestions. You may also do polls or create a Facebook community where your customers can openly post comments, ideas, and recommendations.

Categorize Your Customer Feedback

Just like categorizing your clients, you should also organize your customer feedback according to different categories. This way, you can manage reviews well and respond accordingly. It would also be easier for you to refer to certain feedback when you launch a new product or develop a new campaign. 

Some of the categories you can create for your customer feedback include:

  1. Usability issues
  2. Pricing or billing
  3. Generic positive reviews
  4. Major and minor product bugs
  5. Feature requests

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Commit to Change

Ultimately, the goal of customer feedback is to improve your products and grow your business. If you won’t act on reviews, what’s the use of reading them or taking the time to respond to your customers? As much as consumers appreciate when you respond to their feedback, they’d be more than happy to see changes in your products and some of their requests granted. 

Of course, committing to change doesn’t necessarily mean that you’d apply all comments and suggestions. Just take the most constructive ones or changes that are doable or applicable in your business. Talk about the possible changes not only with your team members but also with your business partners and stakeholders. 

Incorporate Good Customer Feedback Into Your Business

Whether you’re just starting or have been in the business industry for a long time, you should never overlook the importance of customer feedback. Getting comments and suggestions from your team are great, but nothing can beat the honest reviews of consumers. 

Not only is your business growth holding onto customer feedback, but users also base their purchasing decisions on product reviews. You can even get rewards for being a responsive and responsible business owner. So, start managing your customer feedback and improve your overall business strategy.

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Hindol Basu 
GM, Voxco Intelligence

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