This is a guest post by:
Alex Ivanovs has a background of technology writing and journalism for over 5 years, with prior experience in being a webmaster to some of the most resourceful content blogs about WordPress, Web Development, and Web Design. If you wish to explore more of Alex’s work, go see him at Colorlib — where he works as one of the lead managers.
Ask any great CEO out there what makes the user experience more meaningful and surely the answer is going to be user feedback. LinkedIn, although highly disregarded by elitist technology junkies, heavily relies on the feedback of its users to improve user experience and to provide a platform that feeds on the suggestions of its very own users. It seems that it has worked out well for LinkedIn.
Users, customers, consumers, whatever you wish to call them are ultimately the people who keep our business running, so listening to their input can go a long way. This can be divided into many different groups, like general customer surveys which provide data that you can analyze to understand which issues — potential new features — customers talk about the most. After concluding such a survey, you can turn to your team to discuss potential changes to the product or website design.
How to go about collecting user feedback, what are the most prominent techniques for gathering user input and acting on it?
Creating product specific surveys
Creating an online survey is a quick and effective way of collecting feedback from your users. Surveys can be steered into any direction, like product feedback or general user experience reports. But unless you’re asking the right questions, you risk of running surveys that won’t yield much insight into what your customers wish to see improved in your service.
If you wish to improve your product features, try asking any of the following questions to start with.
- Would you recommend us to a friend? — Starting out with this question gives you a clear understanding of how users find your product experience, and whether there are any reasons they would avoid recommending it to a friend, this usually uncovers the problems that users have with your product, or in fact their hopes for features you’d implement in the feature.
- How would you describe our product? — With this question, you can compare the product understanding of your customers with your own vision, and see if there are any gaps left out to fill. Sometimes customers use your products in ways you didn’t think before, which could lead to additional new features.
- Does our product solve all your problems? — Getting your customers to talk about your competition isn’t a bad thing, it can help you understand if there are any features that would make up for what competitors are providing, and could help you get your customers to use only your product in long-term.
- What’s the most obstruct feature of our product? — Here you can tap into the understanding of what features of your product customers are finding difficult to navigate or altogether painful. If majority are talking about the same obstruct feature, you get the idea that it is time to revise it.
- What’s the best feature of our product? — In the same fashion, you will want to find out which features users enjoy the most, so you don’t accidentally discontinue them, or decide to revise.
With these general starting out questions, you will quickly learn about essential insight and usage statistics of your product, its usability and functionality. You can add more questions as you prefer, based on what your product is about.
Concisely built contact forms
Although traditional contact form plugins and tools exist and are utterly helpful, it will aid you greatly if you decide to use a platform such as 123FormBuilder, which has specialized in contact form crafting for nearly a decade now, serving tens of millions of form submissions over this timespan. Because the problem with traditional contact forms is that they’re simply too plain, too narrow to collect real and actionable data about your customers, and what their pain points are.
If you’re running a web design service, where you have other employees working for you, it can be a huge boost to your conversions if you build a contact form template where the potential customer can outline all of their details within a single form, so that you can instantly act on their requirements.
Using a contact form such as the one displayed above, makes it easier for customers to explain their situation but also to leave important details about their availability for an appointment. Include a field that requests a phone number, so you can directly get in touch with them through a phone call. This kind of approach will save you plenty of time — that can be spent improving your services — on having to do back and forth emails to gather this information later.
Live chat widgets for instant feedback
Instant support, live chat, widgets have grown fast in popularity over the last 2 years, with most modern business websites running at least one form of such a widget. There are gazillion choices out there for picking the right live chat plugin for your business website.
But how to conclude instant customer feedback and how to respond to questions accordingly if you haven’t have had the experience of using a live chat platform before?
Here are my best three tips for getting started with live chat widgets to collect user feedback:
- Record common answers to questions — You will want to keep a record of transcripts for the most frequently asked questions, where if a user is talking to one of your agents and the same question is asked — time can properly be saved by providing a concise solution to their problem. This will also help you to scour through the most frequent questions and record a list of things that people are commonly concerned about.
- Ask users to specify their support issue — As you saw in the example visual from Zopim’s live chat solution, they clearly have the option for users to select which department they wish to get in touch with, even before starting the session. This further helps to categorize questions and also allocate the right agent from the particular department.
- Take note of user chat history — Keeping records of what users have had issues with previously can help you to establish deeper emotional connections based on your ability to remember what the user was curious about fixing previously. This way, you can improve user experience through delivering better answers to the problems that they had issues with in the past.
And that kind of wraps it up. We’ve learned about three reliable ways of collecting feedback to improve the user experience, whether it’s for global product needs or for individual service productivity improvements.
How do you use customer feedback in your own business practice to polish user experience? We’d love to hear your stories in the comments.