You may think you already know why customer feedback is beneficial (and crucial) to the success of your business. But do you know how to harness it in the best way possible – and what’s more, do you understand how to optimise feedback in order to take your business to the next level?

Why should I be engaging with customers via feedback?

When you implement a Feedback System of any kind, you’re in good company. You’ll notice yourself that Amazon, Ebay, Argos, John Lewis & Tripadvisor use customer reviews at the core of their marketing strategy to potential new customers. When purchasing a product on a personal level, what’s the first thing you check? How good is the company website? What are others saying about their products and services? With smartphones and tablets constantly to hand, it’s now easy and quick to check a company’s credentials – so it’s no surprise that 90% of customers say buying decisions are influenced by online reviews. Online feedback is an extension of the old ‘word of mouth’ recommendation, which secures a company’s reputation in the minds of the customer and makes them a ‘safe bet’ to do business with. Nowadays even with a word of mouth recommendation, 77% of consumers will still head to the company website to check out their credentials online.

Why should I go online?

For most businesses, knowing that positive feedback can have a good influence on sales is a no-brainer. But how do you obtain that excellent feedback? Tech-savvy yet time-poor, fewer customers are willing to fill out lengthy forms or take part in 5 minute telephone surveys.
Smartphone technology has revolutionised many processes in our daily lives over the last 5 years – and as a result it has irrevocably changed the landscape for businesses; especially when it comes to communication with both existing and potential clients. Consumers now prefer to contact companies via email, live messaging and social media – mostly down to the instantaneous nature of posting and the rapid response time.

What an online Feedback System allows you to do is to easily and efficiently receive and manage customer feedback – so it’s simple and easy for them to let you (and the public) know how good you are. With the help of a handy app, you can ask customers to leave feedback within minutes before they even leave the building.

What about negative feedback?

It’s easy to think that a bad review will ruin your business – and that the solution is to hide it or get rid of it as soon as possible. But in fact, ‘bad’ reviews help a business to grow. And by using a Feedback System such as ours, you have the opportunity to put it right immediately.
Social media has given consumers several alternative platforms through which to leave feedback (good or bad). However when a customer complains via an unmanned account, they effectively go ignored. It’s in these instances that you have a problem – as customers then feel abandoned and frustrated. Meanwhile, their followers and your followers are privy to your apparent negligence (which is often unintentional) and you have missed the opportunity to publicly and professionally sort the issue out.
Feedback Systems update constantly and alert you immediately as soon as you have a review – so you can deal with it then and there.

How can I build my business through feedback (good and bad)?

Clearly displaying feedback in this way shows you have nothing to hide. It proves that you are an honest company by default – as you’re happy to let customers say whatever they like about you on your website for all to see. When things do go wrong, potential clients can clearly see where you have attempted to resolve the issue and put things right. You become that ‘safe bet’ – a status only normally achieved through a word of mouth referral.

In addition to these benefits, you can also improve your ranking on Google and other review sites and social media platforms. You can implement data captured into marketing schemes, using the emails collected as part of an e-campaign. You can also monitor what products or services are working and which ones aren’t so popular, if applicable. It’s really an incredibly clever and insightful analytical tool which offers benefits for many areas of your business.

Want to find out more about how Feedback Systems can benefit your business?

Take a look here: Invest in Digital – Online Feedback

Details about the author:
Michael Goldman is Managing Director of Invest in Digital LTD, a full service Digital Marketing Agency based in Manchester.

Contact details:
3 Hardman Square, Spinningfields, Manchester, M3 3EB
Tel: 0161 706 0004