Article

Chris Price
Chris Price 23 February 2024

10 Must-Have Tech Tools to Transform Customer Feedback into Business Growth

Explore tech tools for businesses to boost customer experience, from personalisation to real-time feedback, ensuring superior service and growth.

In today’s tough business climate, companies need to ensure an excellent customer experience across all their channels to remain competitive. In fact, 86% of consumers say they’re willing to pay companies more to receive a superior customer experience while 64% are more likely to recommend a brand if they have a great experience, leading to increased referral business and a higher return on investment.

Getting the customer relationship right is vital for every business. But it’s not without its challenges. Increasingly customers are engaging with brands across a number of different channels while competition from all quarters – including new ‘digital disruptors’ - means their loyalty can no longer be guaranteed.

So how can companies ensure ‘customer-centricity’ across disparate parts of their organisation as they digitally transform? In part, technology can help provide an answer.

For example, tech tools can be used to personalise the customer experience by delivering relevant content and offers to each individual customer based on their purchase history, website activity and social media engagement. 

The latest technology can also be used to provide real-time communication with customers, such as live chat and video conferencing, thereby helping to resolve customer issues quickly and, simultaneously, improve customer satisfaction.

Read on to explore the leading tech tools designed to assist SMEs in gathering, analysing, and leveraging feedback effectively in order to gain a competitive advantage and grow their businesses. 

1. Use a Survey or Polling Tool

Undoubtedly one of the simplest ways to improve customer service is to ask customers what they think!

SurveyMonkey is a popular survey tool that offers a variety of features, including drag-and-drop survey builder, advanced analytics and integration with other popular business tools.

Other solutions include TypeForm, a tool that focuses on creating visually appealing surveys, and Google Forms – a free survey tool offering multiple question types, email notifications and data export. 

2. Integrate a Review Aggregation Platform

One way businesses can build customer trust is by integrating a review aggregation platform such as Feefo into their website/online platform.

Unlike rival services such as TrustPilot this works by emailing real customers directly, then inviting them to submit a review.

This makes it less susceptible to fake reviews than other services but potentially reduces the level of consumer interaction. 

3. Communicate With Your Customers!

While much of the hype surrounds advanced AI tools, a simple way of improving the customer experience is with ‘traditional’ tools such as text messaging and email marketing.

MailChimp is a popular email marketing platform that offers a variety of features to help businesses track email engagement and create tailored campaigns.

That said, AI can take this process to the next level, with exciting new tools available like PlusDocs that translate customer feedback into personalised marketing templates, presentations and campaigns.

4. Set Up Instant Alerts

Google alerts is a useful and free tool that can help brands to monitor certain keywords online. This could be a particular author, their own brand name or even those of their competitors.

It can be set up to check certain sources (news, blogs, web) and give updates immediately, once a day or once a week. This can be very useful for tracking feedback and addressing any reputational concerns quickly. 

5. Explore Real-Time Feedback 

Used by thousands of companies, including Shopify, Intercom is just one business messaging platform designed to manage customer service in real-time.

Options include an AI chatbot powered by OpenAI which claims to resolve 50% of customer queries instantly and a dashboard which monitors both customer interactions and a business’s capacity to deal with them.

Many companies are also now offering face-to-face interactions via video conferencing solutions such as Zoom to deal with customer queries. 

6. Consider a Review Management System

Numerous software programs are available for managing customer reviews from various sources. For example, Review Trackers is a review management platform that helps businesses collect, manage and analyse reviews from Google, Facebook and many more.

Other useful tools include reviews.co.uk and Customer Thermometer, both free review management systems that allow businesses to collect reviews from their website and social media.

7. Invest in Reputation Monitoring Tools

Various tools exist to help businesses monitor and track their online reputation across social media, review sites and news articles.

One is Reputation.com, a reputation management platform that helps businesses monitor and respond to both positive and negative online reviews.

Another is Brandwatch, a social media monitoring tool that can help businesses track and monitor online mentions of their brand. 

8. Offer a Personalised Service

According to McKinsey, personalisation ‘drives performance and better customer outcomes’ with 71% of consumers expecting customers to deliver personalised interactions.

One of the most popular ecommerce content management systems (CMS), Hubspot allows marketers to personalise website content based on visitor characteristics and behaviour.

Also worth considering is Yusp, a solution which uses machine learning to predict individual behaviour and provide personalised recommendations. 

9. Address Privacy and Data Security concerns

While customers are willing to embrace technology to some degree to gain the benefits of personalisation, this needs to be balanced with the customer and legal need for privacy and data security.

Security and privacy tools and apps such as Shopify's Privacy and Compliance or TinyCookie: GDPR cookie banner can help to build trust with customers by demonstrating that their personal information is safe and secure.

This can lead to increased customer loyalty and repeat business.

10. Consider UX tTechnology Solutions

Whereas once market research was the only way for businesses to fully understand their clients, businesses now have a number of technological solutions at their fingertips.

Transitioning from market research to user experience (UX) research through platforms like UserZoom can be hugely beneficial. UserZoom offers a variety of features, including customer journey mapping, usability testing and feedback collection.

For example, customer journey mapping offers a visual representation of the customer's experience with a company - from initial awareness to post-purchase. Through these technology solutions, businesses can better understand how customers interact with their services and identify areas that could be optimised for increased business success.

Conclusion

For SMEs, harnessing technology to gather, analyse, and act upon customer feedback is an indispensable strategy for fostering growth and building customer-centric operations.

By embracing the diverse array of tech tools outlined in this article, from personalisation engines to reputation monitoring tools, SMEs can elevate their customer service, refine their offerings and ultimately thrive in an era driven by customer satisfaction.

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