How to Collect and Process Customers’ Feedback
You may often hear from the industry experts that it is essential to collect customers’ feedback to know how to best update and further improve your newly released product. But do you know how EXACTLY you should do it? If you don’t, keep on reading to learn all the ins and outs of this process.
How to Collect Customers’ Feedback
We guess you can name a few best ways how you can collect feedback from users of your product. Yet, which one is the best? To decide on this, let’s talk about their peculiarities and advantages.
1. Conducting in-app surveys
In-app surveys are among the most popular ways of collecting feedback. They allow you to get information about your users’ experience, and inform the customers that their opinion matters. However, keep in mind several important rules when developing an in-app survey:
- The shorter, the better. First of all, don’t make such surveys long — users may simply get bored and irritated when filling a survey, which is not good for your reputation and number of downloads. We recommend to ask up to 3 questions, not more.
- Choose the time wisely. Just imagine: you released a cool game, and then a survey pops up right when a user is playing. Will a user be happy? No way. That’s why it is important to choose the right time. The best strategy here is to offer a survey right after a user finishes using a specific app feature. The information received in this way will be accurate enough, as a user will have to fill out the survey immediately after interacting with the feature.
- Don’t be too intrusive. If you ask to fill a survey every time a user interacts with a feature, your app will lose its audience rather fast. No one likes being distracted all the time.
- Be polite. It is always better to be polite, and apps are not an exception. Don’t make your users fill surveys, better ask them something like “Enjoying our app? Then take our quick survey to help us make it even better!”.
And here is one more recommendation regarding in-app surveys — when working on a survey, imagine being a user. Would you answer your questions?
2. Sending transactional emails
A transactional email is an email your user receives after certain interaction with your app. For instance, your application is all about flowers delivery. Then an email a user gets after the flowers were delivered is called a transactional email. Other examples are emails received after updating an app, purchasing the premium plan, etc. Some people think that such way of collecting feedback is not worth attention, but we don’t agree. Total open and click rates for transactional emails are very high! For example, order confirmations are opened around 8 times as frequently as standard marketing mails.
Some rules from the previous paragraph also work in case you choose transactional emails as a way to collect feedback. For instance, asking too many questions is definitely a bad idea — too long questionnaires can simply scare your users away. So if you have a lot of questions, it is better to send several short emails to ask all of them. The first email can be devoted to the quality of delivery, the second one — to a new feature, and so on. Besides, it would be great to give your users some freedom. End a transactional email with a phrase like this: “We would be happy to get in touch with you, so if you have any questions or suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact us!”.
3. Making phone calls
Unlike emails and surveys, phone calls allow hearing the user’s voice, so you and your team will be able to understand their real feelings about the product. However, collecting feedback via phone is a bit more complicated process than using the above-mentioned methods.
First, don’t call all your existing users, as the new ones or those who use your product infrequently won’t be able to tell you a lot. In the best case, their answers will be limited to “Yes” and “No”, and we guess you want to collect more useful information. So, to get valuable feedback, we recommend you to talk to loyal users, who already know a lot about your product and use it pretty often.
Secondly, you will have to choose the time carefully. Obviously, no one will be happy to hear the phone call on Sunday at 5am, but this is not the only time you should avoid. Don’t make calls between 7am and 8am — that’s virtually the worst time you can choose. Another bad option is a time period from 1pm to 2pm. In turn, the best time to make phone calls is between 4pm and 5pm. Calling between 11am and 12am is also a good idea.
4. Using suggestion boxes
Suggestion boxes are a pretty special thing, as they allow users to communicate with each other. It usually works like this: a user writes a feedback, and then other users can leave comments or vote for it. At the end you can check the most popular posts — they will be exactly what your users want. At least, the majority of them.
And here is a little tip on using suggestion boxes: at first, invite the most loyal and active users of your product. They know how things work, so they will be able to offer some interesting ideas. When there will be at least several posts, you can invite those people who use your product not that often. Even in case they have no ideas to offer, they will be able to vote for posts of other users or leave comments on them.
5. Creating forums and using social networks
We guess your company and product have a website or at least accounts on different social networks. You probably use them to inform your existing and potential users about news, but they can also be a nice tool for collecting feedback. If you have a website, we recommend you to create a separate page for a forum, where users will be able to leave comments and communicate with each other. Such a forum will work more or less in the same way as a suggestion box.
In the case of social networks, things work a bit different. For instance, on Facebook you can simply allow users to publish posts right on your page. For a YouTube account, you can enable comments, so users will be able to tell what they think. The only thing is that all these discussions, posts, and comments should be moderated and responded (as fast as possible!). This way of collecting feedback is actually advantageous to both parties. You will get a feedback, while your users will understand that their opinion is important to you.
6. Creating a feedback form on your website
A lot of websites publish positive reviews of their users on their starting pages, but have no form for leaving feedback. Don’t be like these sites — create such a form and make it easy to find. It may include some questions related to your product, but we also recommend you to create a special field for leaving comments. This trick will allow users to express their opinion without reference to your questions.
7. Checking reviews on stores
That’s the most obvious thing you can do when collecting feedback, but we will still include it in our list — always check reviews your users leave on Play Market and App Store. On Play Market users can also vote for other users’ comments, so you will be able to check what posts are the most popular.
How to Process Collected Feedback
When you are done with collecting feedback, it is time to analyse all the reviews and answers. If you do it in the right way, the users’ feedback can turn into a really efficient trigger of your product’s growth and success. Here is a to-do list you may want to use:
1. Categorize the reviews and comments
After you check the collected data, you will notice that they fall into different categories. The categories can relate to diverse features of your product, its price, bugs, etc. When the list of the categories will be ready, sort all the comments, reviews, and answers. In case a comment covers more than one topic, you can divide it into several parts, and categorize each of them properly.
2. Divide negative comments from the positive ones
Unfortunately, having only positive comments is virtually impossible, but don’t let negative reviews upset you. They are your motivation to make your product better, so use them on your way to success! So, after you categorize everything, we recommend to divide each category into two sub-categories. One of them will go for positive comments, and another one for the negative ones. This step will help to put everything in order, so don’t skip it. The more structured your data is, the easier it is to analyse it.
3. Find out what to improve
Now it is time to go through all the reviews, comments, and answers, and identify what can be improved. Are there a lot of users requesting a new feature? Then you should think about starting working on it. Are there reports about some bugs? They are extremely important too. And so on… Check everything carefully to understand how you can improve your product.
4. Start working on improvements
You already know the things you have to work on, so now it is time to create tasks and to add them to your project’s roadmap. That’s a pretty logical step, so there is nothing else to add about it.
5. Respond to comments
We have already said that it is important to keep in touch with your users, but this step is still on the list. Just in case. Pay special attention to negative reviews — talk to their authors, walk in their shoes, and do everything to make them happy. Such a strategy can help to retain even the most discontent users. Positive reviews also require a bit of attention — at least something like “Thank you, we appreciate your feedback!”. Keep in mind that every user spent a bit of time on leaving a feedback, so it would be honest (and useful!) if you would spend a bit of your precious time on writing a reply.
Now you know how to collect feedback and deal with it, but we have one extra tip for you. Don’t use only one way of collecting data — combine several of them. Some users prefer emails, while the other ones — phone calls. Some of them like spending time on forums, and for some others it is enough to fill a short in-app survey. So, define what ways are the most suitable for your target audience, and use all of them to get the most accurate feedback. And remember that users’ reviews can lead your product to success, so do your best to process them!