Why are customer satisfaction surveys important?
Customer satisfaction surveys allow you to monitor your company's performance consistently. By asking the right questions, you can see how well your company is doing overall, find out whether there are issues with individual employees, and sometimes generate new leads to expand your customers' purchases with your company.
How should you conduct the surveys?
You can send out an email with questions about their experience, mail a survey, or call the person who was most involved with the purchase. The questions you ask are critical, however, in finding out whether there were any problems with the transaction. Ask for a rating on every critical points of contact (e.g., technical knowledge, turnaround time, follow up), and always offer the opportunity to provide additional feedback.
It's important to ask whether the customer would refer your company to others, because that tells you, really, how competent they think your company is. The best time to contact customers is within thirty days of their last transaction, so the experience is still fresh.
What kinds of questions should you ask your customers?
Think about categories where you want to measure your company's performance. If you're a distributor, you'll want to ask about turnaround time, for products and services, as well as what they think of the product or service they received. How helpful was your staff? What could they have done better? A rating system of 1 to 5 works well to quantify the results and make it easier to compare different time frames.
Always ask what the customer liked about their experience. They might give the name of a particularly helpful employee or provide concrete examples of what you could do better. This process will expose weaknesses in your organization quickly, which is valuable when the surveys are completed consistently. Finding your areas of weakness and quickly correcting them is vital to retaining your customers for the long term.
What's the best process when you receive negative feedback?
Any sort of negative feedback should be followed up with a personal call from a manager, someone with the authority to provide extraordinary customer service. What we see happen over and over again is when we provide a negative score to our clients, and they respond quickly to the complaint, the customer becomes extraordinarily loyal and turns into one of the company's most loyal supporters.
But you can't turn someone around if you don't know they are unhappy as quickly as possible. That's why it's important to conduct surveys consistently. An unhappy customer can have a huge influence on your company, particularly with the ease of posting negative experiences online through a variety of websites and forums.
Bad scores can also be an indicator of who or what in your company needs additional attention or training. If a specific employee is frequently named in surveys with a bad score, you can address those issues and train the employee to avoid problems in the future. When your customers rate a particular aspect of your service poorly, you can rethink how that service is being provided to ensure a more positive experience.
It’s also nice to receive positive feedback, to see all the things you are doing correctly. With a few standard practices, too, you can see how you compare to your competition.
If you'd like to make sure your customer satisfaction surveys are conducted routinely every month, give Winsby a call! We have a proprietary system that lets you see both summaries and details of your customers' feedback over a selected date range.