Your customers hold a huge amount of information which can enable you to meet more of their needs, solve their problems and maximise your revenue. They can also give you more insights into new products and services which could help to expand the business. To get this information you need to go directly to the source and ask your clients for their feedback. Important and useful questions you may want to ask your clients could include:
- Why did they choose you over other service providers/competitor brands?
- What product/service did they buy?
- How would they rate the service, e.g., star ratings, numbers, smiley faces?
- In which areas did you meet/exceed expectations?
- What could you improve?
- Would they recommend you to other people?
When asking questions, you should keep them simple to increase the chances that customers will respond. Some companies offer an incentive such as a discount or entry into a prize draw. Once you have decided what to ask, here are some possible ways to ask the questions to gather accurate client feedback including some pros and cons.
Ask them directly
One of the simplest ways to get feedback from your clients is to speak to them directly either by email or via a phone call. This is an informal way of doing it and is quick, but is not always suitable or effective. When you take feedback verbally, you are likely to use open-ended questions and will be inconsistent in your questions. It will also be difficult to collect the data in a format that will be easy to analyse.
If you would like to ask a set of questions that are standardised across your clients, you might want to create a survey that can be completed digitally. This could be a PFD form that you email to your clients or a form within your website. It will be more time-intensive, but it enables you to standardise your questions. If you use a form within your website, you may be able to make the process anonymous so clients are more likely to provide frank and honest feedback.
Often the best reading of customer satisfaction is taken at the moment a client uses your service or buys a product. To get this information, you can invest in innovative technology such as feedback smileys. Using a simple, intuitive and visual system, your customers can give clear feedback as to their level of satisfaction. Because the information is taken digitally, it can be instantly translated into detailed reports and insights which you can act upon.
Hard copy questionnaires
Although somewhat old fashioned, in some cases, a hard copy questionnaire may be more suitable. You can create a standard set of questions and mail them to your clients with a stamped addressed enveloped inside to encourage them to return it. Once the questionnaires have been returned, you will need to enter the data into a spreadsheet manually so you can analyse the data. This is why this tactic is best for businesses with fewer clients.