Hearing constructive criticism about your startup is right on par with hearing someone talk crap about your baby. The unfortunate reality is that we need feedback in order to grow and sustain our businesses. Customer loyalty leads to sustainable profit margins and increases the chance that your product or service will get promoted by word of mouth (which we all know is among the most effective ways of going about it).
Another solid point is most customers don’t tell you that they are unhappy about with words – they do so with action. Obviously retention rates are important to track, but the reasons customers and clients stay with (or leave) you is also something you need to factor in and analyze.
Feedback of course gives you some context to work with in figuring out what is working and what isn’t for your people, but it does more than that. Eliciting feedback is a way of starting a conversation with your customers.
These conversations can serve as a forum for way more than just damage control. Talking to customers sends a message that you give a sh*t and most people respond really well to that. Not to mention good customer-care experiences almost always get reported to friends and family. You could go from the business that messed up to that provider that solved a problem.
The latest feature that Square is adding to its arsenal of small business tools is a feedback product (appropriately called Square Feedback). The nifty little platform turns digital, emailed, and SMS receipts into easy to use feedback channels. It’s a really good idea and is yet another reason to consider signing up for Square (you do have to be a Square customer to use the tool). Customers receive a button asking how their experience was right on their receipt.
Square users (the business owners in this case) get an alert that someone has provided feedback and can follow up with the customer on Square’s dashboard. Feedback is elicited by questions that are broken down into clear to the point categories. There is also a way of customers giving their take on how things are going anonymously, which could make for more honest and useable information.
Feedback also has a tracking feature that allows you to see what problems are being presented and how they are being solved over a period of time.