The customer review system is designed as a communication response tool for your business interactions with customers. However, like any tool, the CRS is only as good as how and why you use it. Left alone, the CRS will not help your business gain feedback, reviews, or testimonials. You will need to bring the CRS into your business sales, marketing, and support processes, to gain the valuable feedback and response that can be applied to future sales, customer generated marketing, and product development.
Let’s take a closer look at the necessary task of asking for customer feedback and reviews:
Ask and you shall receive
Just by asking for feedback or review substantially increases the likelihood of receiving a response through the CRS. Simply sending a customer an email asking for a review of their experience OR sending a direct message through social media can play a vital role in obtaining customer feedback. Better yet, asking your customer in person, using a Review Card, results in the highest customer feedback response. Having a sales or support person thanking a customer for their business with a small ask for the customer’s experience is a powerful way to get meaningful testimonials and online reviews for your business.
Once you get comfortable with the idea of asking your customers for feedback and reviews, you will need to find the best time and place to make the ask. There is a moment in your sales and support processes that is the ideal time for getting customer feedback, in almost all small businesses, but asking at the wrong time can have consequences.
Don’t ask too soon
Asking your customers too soon during the sale or support process can result in your customer feeling pressured and unresolved. Even worse, your business can come off pushy or desperate for the response. It is best to ask for feedback or an online review once the final payment has been received, the product has been delivered, or the issue has been resolved. The person to make the ask for the feedback or review should be from the person who has built the strongest relationship with the customer.
Don’t ask too late
Asking for feedback or a review too late can also result in a lower response rate. Asking weeks or months after the sales process will go ignored as enough time has passed and the customer is no longer motivated and has their attention elsewhere. Delay can be caused by your sales or support team members ignoring or skipping the ask, or by expecting the customer to naturally give feedback on their own accord. Either way, you can still attempt to warm the customer up again to ask for a review, but the chances of them following through are significantly lowered. When it comes to asking for customer feedback or reviews, better late than never.
Ask politely and don’t be pushy
Being polite is always the right ingredient to use in a recipe for getting great feedback. However, your customers may still avoid giving feedback altogether. You should still be persistent and ask again, if you do not receive a response. Don’t wait too long after your initial ask, before asking again. No more than a week. If you don’t receive the response after the second ask, move on. If you have another sale with the customer again in the future, you can try getting feedback then.
When you know when and how to ask for a customer review as a process, you can fit that process into the system of your business. A simple process for asking for the review, follow up, giving the customer a clear path and instructions, and thanking the customer for the review should be the major tasks in your customer review process.
Be specific of what you ask for
If there is a certain type of feedback you are looking for, such as a review or a testimonial, be specific when asking your customer for one. Example: If you want more reviews on Google, ask your customer for feedback in the form of an online review on your Google profile. When your customer gets to this point in the CRS process, they will recall Google and choose it for the review. Leaving a customer to choose their way through the CRS can end up with undesired results, such as an unusable testimonial or a star-rating without a message.
Putting it all together for the right response
Identify the best time during your sales or support process to ask for their feedback. Do so promptly, without delay, to get the best response from your customers. Politely ask your customers to share their experience with your business, product, or services using the CRS. Give your customers direction when asking for their feedback. Tell them to leave a testimonial or review on a specific business profile. They will seek it out in the CRS and accomplish the requested task.
Find the right method that suits your business needs and stick with it. Try testing your asking process by using email, phone, and Review Cards as your communication type. Once you find the best method, stick with it to gain exceptional online reviews, powerful testimonials, and insight into customers buying experiences.
How are you asking your customers for online reviews?
Leave your answer and feedback in the comments section below.
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