The Name of the Game
By Judi Moreo

If maintaining customer satisfaction keeps sales and profits up, then finding out what makes customers happy should be a top priority.

Collecting customer feedback is a win/win situation. Your customers will know you take them seriously, and you will know what changes and improvements to make to increase sales. It is vital to get quality information and this depends on your approach to feedback. Follow these steps to collect data that will make a positive impression on your bottom line.

Increase customer response
To determine accurate conclusions about your customers based on comment cards, you will need at least 30 customers to fill out comment cards each month. Make it easy for them to respond. Hand the cards to them and explain why they should be filled out and returned. Let customers know how important it is for them to let you know what they think.

Ask relevant questions

Design survey questions carefully. Be sure you ask questions that will enable you to find what would improve your product and service offering. If you are planning changes that will affect them, ask for their thoughts and adjust your plans accordingly. Be careful not to ask questions that you could answer yourself.

Reward customers who return cards

When you have customers who return forms, they deserve acknowledgement. Try having a monthly drawing for customers who return cards. This may be the key to getting input from your customers.

Give employees “What I should know” cards

Issue a blank card to all of your front line team members once a week. When a customer has an unusual question, or the employee is unfamiliar with the process, the employee should make a note on the “What I should know” card.

Collect these cards and track the growth patterns of your staff. The challenge is that if they really use the cards, they’ll come up with so many questions and comments that you will be hard pressed to handle them.

Follow up

It is critical to follow up with your customers on a regular basis. You will benefit greatly by doing this, especially when you receive negative feedback. Address every negative comment no matter how trivia it may seem to you. It’s your customers’ opinion that counts. That’s the purpose of customer surveys – getting feedback. If you are unsure of what the customer means, then call your customer and ask for clarification. In doing this, it may well allow you the opportunity to resolve the problem.

Categorize cards and analyze trends

You are able to see if the complaints focus on a particular subject or fault. You can even compare them on a quarterly basis which will enable you to see if there is a downward spiral in service, product reliability or any other problems.
Exceeding your customers’ expectations is the name of the game. Comment cards and survey forms tell you what pleases or displeases your customers. They give you a chance to pinpoint any problems and fix them! It’s worth the effort.


Author's Bio: 

Judi Moreo is the President of Turning Point International, a Las Vegas company specializing in the training of companies and individuals to manage customer experiences to build successful relationships. For information on how to bring Judi into your company or organization, call (702) 896-2228 or email