Best Practices to Collect Feedback for Startups
Getting feedback in the early stages of your business is extremely important. That’s because you don’t have much room to fail. Your team is small and you are operating on a limited budget. Therefore you need to learn what works, what doesn’t and what you should really focus on.
If something doesn’t contribute to your growth, you should get rid of it. And once you’ve discovered something that people really like, you need to double down your efforts into making that even better.
From the very beginning, your focus should be on building a better product, getting more sales, and retaining the customers.
Use Customers Feedback to understand:
- Which features to improve
Through early stage market research, you can only make assumptions on what features users would like to have, and if they’re willing to pay for what you offer.
However, the real knowledge about your product will come after your customers start using it for the first time. At this stage, they’ll be able to tell you what features are good, bad, and how you can improve it.
By getting insights into how to meet customers expectations, solve their problems, and fulfill their most desired needs, you can build a product around what they really want.
This doesn’t mean you should implement each client request. Filter them, analyze, estimate the ROI and only after that bring the customer idea into life.
2. Which pricing model to choose
When you take into consideration the cost of rent, taxes, development resources, marketing, etc., you realize that pricing can make or break your business. From the customers perspective, some may want to month-to-month plans instead of yearly. Meanwhile, others may prefer to pay a higher price for the premium experience. That’s why pricing is such a sensitive topic.
You need to take into strike the balance between how much your competitors charge and how much your potential customers are ready to pay, how will they estimate the value your product will bring to them.
3. How satisfied your customers are
It costs a way more to acquire a new customer than to retain the ones you already have. And for most startups, every dollar matters. That’s why you need to create a better experience for your customers if you want them to stay loyal to your brand.
Customer feedback helps you determine if your clients are truly satisfied and which areas you need to improve. By offering to solve their problems, you build value and strengthen your relationship. This helps to retain them in the long-run.
How to collect feedback
Let us give you some tips on getting feedback when launching a startup.
1. Start Small
Start by asking for feedback from your colleagues, friends, and family, better someone who is close to your target audience. Or better find your potential customers and talk to them directly.
You can also try using these specialized platforms to get some initial feedback:
- Community of tech lovers and early adopters
- Join local meetups in your industry and ask for product demos
- Join public Slack channels
- Ask for users opinions on Quora, Reddit, specialized Facebook, and Linkedin groups.
2. Grow your feedback
We advise you to use usability tests, surveys, and live chat as part of your feedback system. That’s because, with these channels, you can start conversations and receive in-depth responses with relative ease. Don’t wait for your customers to reach out to you, you should be the first to initiate the dialogue.
Another beautiful tool to use is community feedback portal — a crowd-sourcing platform that meets real-time feature requests with customer demand-based voting.
3. Keep it easy
When customers are satisfied, they rarely go out of their way to provide feedback. That’s why you need to take a proactive approach and go to them first. Surveys are a great way to do just that. By sending a customer feedback survey to your clients at different checkpoints (such as immediately after purchase, after customer service experience, or a few weeks after the sale), you’ll make it easy for them to give you their much-needed feedback.
4. Respond to everything
Most entrepreneurs want to ignore negative responses, but every piece of feedback you receive, whether positive or negative, will serve as a foundation for the improvements you make within your business.
Talk to your customers every day. Learn their goals, what they are trying to achieve, what difficulties they come across, in order to understand what is stopping them from achieving their goals with your product. You should also ask what they like about your product and what you could be doing better.
5. Put all the feedback in one place
With so many channels available, it’s easy to lose track of data if you rely on spreadsheets or emails only. That’s why we recommend you use feedback software to organize it into one place. Feedback software allows you to gather all the incoming requests (emails, social media mentions, chat messages, website form messages) in one place. This way you can easily analyze the data and build your product roadmaps.
6. Focus on quality instead of quantity (increasing sales)
To grow a business, you have to stop losing your customers. In order to stop the churn, you need to know the exact reasons why your customers are leaving. To know these reasons, all you need to do is talk to them. All the statistic data you receive in your analytics tools won’t tell you why your customers are unhappy, and this is not a guessing game.
How to get feedback when your business matures
As your business grows, you won’t have time to do in-depth research with each customer. Here’s what we recommend during this stage of the process.
1. Focus on the scale. You need to be able to gather hundreds (if not thousands) of pieces of data from customers. That’s why we recommend using specialized tools such as surveys, usability tests, and in-app feedback. They allow you to collect massive amounts of data without any extra time and effort on your part.
2. Track customers needs over the time. As users continue to use your product, they will continue to find ways to make things better. Over the time, their needs evolve. A great way to keep track of this is to conduct relationship surveys on an annual or biannual basis. Not only does this give you a great baseline measurement of customer experience, but it also gets your company back in front of lapsed customers, boosting your brand visibility.
3. Identify Patterns. If a customer leaves one complaint about a particular experience, at a scale, that’s not something to worry about. However, when you see the same complaint being left hundreds of times, then you need to fix this part of your business immediately. At this stage of the process, you need to identify common complaints and see which ones are worth pursuing and which ones are a priority when fixing.
Your goal should be to keep track of customers insights. This allows you to demonstrate how valuable their opinion is to your company. You need to make it clear that customers play an important role in shaping your business, and that you are focused on fulfilling their needs.
By taking this collaborative approach, you make customers feel more attracted to your company and create a stronger relationship with them.
When gathering feedback for your startup, start small and focus on quality in the beginning. As your business grows, use channels to acquire these insights en masse and use feedback software to keep them organized into one place.