Getting Customer Feedback

How To Get “Voice Of Customer” & Apply Best Practices

Getting Voice of Customer (VOC) feedback is an essential part of conducting business. I’ve seen too many companies develop new products and features without directly asking customers what they want upfront. Then they wonder why they don’t attain sales goals post-launch.The same holds true for websites, apps, and other digital customer experiences. Designing without VOC input and user testing can lead to customer frustration and dissatisfaction. If any part of the customer journey is not simple, easy and intuitive, customers usually leave. Even worse, they share their bad experiences with others.

How to Capture VOC Insights

So, what is the best way to capture Voice of Customer insights? In general, surveys are a common method to understand customer perceptions and expectations across touch points. However, for surveys to be effective, best practices must be applied.

For instance,this survey I received provides a great example of Doing CX Right. On the other hand, it also makes some CX mistakes. 

Customer survey and DoingCXRight

In this example, the survey does the following things right:   

1. Shows a progress bar

This lets me see how far along I am until the end.

2. Includes questions that are written clearly

Without confusing terminology, I am able to move through the survey quickly and comfortably.

3. Provides the ability to go backward to re-review answers

Rather than including only an arrow to proceed forward, this survey lets me make changes and confirm that I am giving the company the information I want them to know.

However, the survey does the following things wrong:

1. Includes too many questions (49 total).

Ultimately, I ended up abandoning after 10 questions.

2. Offers confusing answer options

What is the difference between “almost always” and “always?” Does “almost always” mean sometimes?

3. Is not designed for mobile use

Respondents with bigger fingers can’t select answers easily because of the size of the boxes.

Other Considerations in DoingCXRight:

Focus on key metrics

Key metrics like the Net Promoter Score (NPS) – 0 very unlikely to recommend vs 10 very likely to refer – help you understand the customer mindset.

Include questions that are DRIVERS of NPS. For example, Level of Effort (0 very difficult to 10 very easy); Satisfaction (0 very unsatisfied vs 10 very satisfied); Sentiments (0 very angry vs 10 very happy), are NPS drivers.

For more insight on CX Measurements, see this article.

Allow for open comments

When you offer open comments, survey takers can provide more details about their answers. Sometimes, the greatest sources of new CX initiatives come from customers.

Test incentives

Depending on how loyal they are, some customers only take time to give feedback if there is a direct benefit to them. In addition to their level of brand loyal, they want to share more about an experience because they hope someone will follow up.

Of course, this leads me to my final point…

Close the loop 

Do not ask for customer feedback unless you plan to take action. Also, once you make changes from the insights you gathered, let customers know what improved and how much their voice matters.

User Panels for VOC Feedback

Customer experience community

Another way to get VOC feedback includes communities and user panels. Rather than building your own, I recommend leveraging external company platforms.
This is an example from well-known retailer, Lord & Taylor. In this case, the company is using a panel to understand customer preferences about marketing messages. 

More VOC Resources

With the importance of VOC in mind, I share my favorite vendors and platforms that excel in collecting, analyzing and prioritizing VOC insights in upcoming articles. These insights help business teams take action to create and improve customer satisfaction and brand loyalty. I’m also talking about best practices around “Voice of Employee.”

After all, VOE + VOC = the path to DoingCXRight.

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DoingCXRight by Stacy Sherman

*All opinions expressed on the DoingCXRight Blog and site pages are the authors’ alone and do not reflect the opinions of or imply the endorsement of employers or other organizations.

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