Do You Hear Your Customers? – Chicago Innovation@Cago – Medium

Do You Hear Your Customers?

Getting an accurate read on what your clients think about your business performance and your customer service efforts is not rocket science. Many of your customers use Yelp and Google Reviews every day. But what if you really want to drill down and get the feedback BEFORE it hits the Internet? You have the power at your fingertips and it’s pretty easy. It’s your website’s contact form. Most companies think of using the form only as a means to gather new customer leads. Some businesses have not even thought of putting in a form on their site at all. But all you have to do is look at the pages of Yelp and Google Reviews to figure out that people want to share their opinion … and they are sharing their opinion about your business all over social media anyway. At best you advertise your best feature to a new audience on Yelp. At it’s worse, it advertises your flaws to new customers and your competition.

A better solution than Yelp and Google Reviews!

A savvy business owner uses the contact form to focus on a specific part of their business and uses questions to gather information on areas they see as important to meeting their customer’s needs. A form can focus in on product offerings, delivery systems, customer service or any specific areas that is chosen as a target requiring improvement. An effective form can offer key statistics for the results and provide measurable improvements (or needs to improve points) if it is used regularly. And as an added incentive, any positive feedback that is provided can be used to enhance your future marketing efforts as it builds upon your existing strengths. In short, the form is an easy way to gather feedback that can have a direct and lasting impact.

Old customers vs. new customers

Let’s say you have a car dealership. You can post your form on your website and gather responses from people who are looking to buy a car. This works well if you offer an incentive like a free oil change after the customer purchases a car or at least comes in to shop. Another approach is that you send a form to an existing customer. Here, the feedback is much more direct. They can provide accurate information based off their own experience and if they happen to be a regular customer, the feedback is even more important.

Ask yourself this question:

Who would you like to hear from — a regular customer who knows your services and uses your services regularly OR someone who just happens to stumble upon your business and who has never used it before?

In this example, if the buyer is someone who routinely purchases a car on lease every three years, that customer is golden. They can be a wealth of information on what they are looking for when picking a dealership. They can offer valuable advice that can lead to the next sale. The feedback they give may be important enough to capture similar like-minded car buyers. That is something to build upon. The people who have completed a sale with you can offer keys of understanding as to what you do best, and what you do poorly. They can also be your most vocal advocates to their friends. All you have to do is ask … in a form.

Are you using contact forms effectively? What kind of results are you seeing? Drop us a line at [email protected] — we would love to hear your thoughts.