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Customer Feedback Tools for Small Businesses

Do you know what your customers really think about your company, products, or services? If you don’t have an answer readily available, you should make it a point to find out: over 70 percent of consumers trust the opinions of their family and friends over marketing messages. Customer feedback is essential to running a business: it tells you what’s working, what’s not, what needs to stay the same, and what needs to improve. Here’s a list of effective ways to get feedback from current and potential customers.

Email/Contact Forms

Sometimes the best way to get a candid response from customers is to simply ask for one. When customers sign up via email to access information on your site, you’ll have the opportunity to send out an auto-responder email that asks a single question. At the end of the email, you should ask them to reply to you with their thoughts and concerns. Many of them will, their responses will be candid and, best of all, they’ll be private. Just make sure you actually reply to these emails, otherwise you’ll be letting your customers down and they’ll be hesitant to email you again in the future.

FluidSurveys

At $17 per month for a professional plan with unlimited responses, FluidSurveys offers a robust set of tools that can easily integrate with other cloud-based services. Currently used by major brands like Coca-Cola, FluidSurveys is an easy way to create surveys and get customer feedback. If you’re apprehensive about signing up for a paid plan, you can test the platform for free with 20-question surveys that are limited to 150 responses per survey. All FluidSurveys can be managed with mobile apps.

SuggestionBox

This suggestion management system allows you to put an interactive SuggestionBox on your site via a widget or API. Users can submit and vote on ideas, and you’ll be able to effectively identify what your customers really want. Features include private messaging, auto-responders, and the ability to group similar suggestions together so that one response can reach multiple customers. It’s important to note that customers can create a SuggestionBox for companies without their consent, so check to see if a box exits before you create one for your company.

OpinionLab

This popular VoC platform is used by more than half of Fortune 500 companies, and for good reason. Ideal for companies with virtual offices or brick-and-mortar stores, OpinionLab allows merchants to gain real-time feedback for a variety of channels, ranging from websites and mobile to online ads and even brick-and-mortar stores. OpinionLab uses multiple-choice questions and open response areas to gather information on customers and how they use your product. A mobile-app is available for iPhone.

SurveyMonkey

Whether you’re interested in gaining customer feedback or getting better acquainted with your customers, this service is considered to be the leader among web-based survey tools since 2011. In fact, SurveyMonkey collects, on average, more than two million responses per day. The product boosts enhanced security, skip-logic features, custom designs, and URLs that can be used to track responses. The free plan allows for 10-question surveys, with up to 100 responses each. Those interested in unlimited questions and responses and other advanced features will pay $17/month for its select plan.