Making feedback work for your business

customer-feedback

Turning your business into an industry leader means constantly optimising and improving your business to better serve your market. Trying to do that without collecting feedback is like trying to drive a car at night without headlights. The key to understanding your customers and providing them with the best service possible is getting and properly managing that feedback. But this begs the question: What is good feedback, and how can we use it to help a business succeed?

Unsecured business loans

Getting good, actionable feedback is tricky. Customers often don’t want to take the time to analyse their feelings about their experience with a business, much less to fill out long surveys or answer phone calls. This resistance can be extremely frustrating to small business owners, who can’t afford to invest heavily in market research. Because of this, many small businesses try to rely on passive methods to get the input they need.

1. The problem with passive feedback systems

Many small businesses rely on feedback that customers provide on their own initiative. That might mean aggregating Yelp reviews, tracking the issues that your customer service center is contacted about, or simply having a “feedback” submission form on your website. These methods are popular because they don’t require a lot of investment in terms of time or resources. Unfortunately, the information is only of very limited value.

Customers almost exclusively only go out of their way to provide feedback when they have a significant problem, or if they’ve had a bad experience. Collecting and analysing this data can help you to identify and manage serious issues with your business, but it doesn’t provide much information about what customers specifically like and what you could do to outcompete the rest of your industry moving forward.

2. Apply a personal touch

The obvious solution is to reach out and gather feedback actively. While they’re easy to administer, automated email or website-based surveys can be very easily ignored and don’t necessarily make recipients feel like they’re seriously being addressed. To get a real, usable response rate, you’ll want to lead customers into the feedback process as a part of doing business with you. Whether that’s at the point of sale, the point of delivery, or during a client meeting, the point is that you reach out to your customers and explicitly request their feedback.

3. Keep it transparent

When a customer is asked to provide feedback, they don’t really know what they’re agreeing to in terms of an investment of time and effort. This can make customers feel uncomfortable and resistant. Vague requests to “answer a couple of questions” or “give us a moment of your time” can make this even worse.

Instead, be very clear about what you’re asking, so that people understand what you’re doing and feel in control of the situation. For example, “Would you be willing to take a 3 minute survey on your experience with us to help us improve?” is going to get more respondents than “Could I just please have another moment of your time?”

4. Ask specific questions

Open ended “tell us what you think” types of questions have their place, but they require the customer to do a lot of work. Ideally you’ll want to elicit highly targeted information that can help you analyse and make judgments about specific aspects of your operation. For example, you might ask customers how they feel about their experience with your sales staff, or how satisfied a client is with the ongoing communication between your business and them.

These questions don’t require elaborate answers to provide useful information, but they still give customers the opportunity to provide highly detailed feedback if they want to. Best of all, they place equal emphasis on discussing positive and negative aspects of their experience.

5. Analyse

Exactly what to do with the feedback you receive depends heavily on your industry, markets, budget, timing, and a hundred other factors. A good way to start, however, is to divide the feedback you get into feedback for development, and feedback for troubleshooting.

Feedback for troubleshooting

This type of feedback helps you to identify and address problems in your existing operation. It’s often negative, and points out where your business is currently underperforming. Dealing with these kinds of issues is critical to ensuring that your business functions reliably and offers great service as it’s understood in your industry today.

Feedback for development

This helps you to identify the hopes and dreams of your customers, and is useful for guiding your business into the future. By finding out what customers like to see, what they want more of, or what they would do entirely differently, you get a glimpse into possible opportunities for disruption and real industry leadership.

Understanding what general purpose different types of feedback can serve allows you to look forward and determine how to drive progress in your industry without neglecting the issues that need to be addressed in your current operation. By gathering the right kind of feedback in the right way, you and your business can illuminate a better, disruptive path for the future.

  • Terms of the website use

    Please read these Terms & Conditions before using this site

    This terms of use (together with the documents referred to in it) tells you the terms of use on which you may make use of our website www.fifocapital.ie (our site). Use of our site includes accessing, browsing, or submitting information through our site.

    Please read these terms of use carefully before you start to use our site, as these will apply to your use of our site.

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    Other applicable terms
    These terms of use refer to the following additional terms, which also apply to your use of our site.
    Our Privacy Policy which sets out the terms on which we process any personal data we collect from you, or that you provide to us. By using our site, you consent to such processing and you warrant that all data provided by you is accurate.
    Our Cookie Policy which sets out information about the cookies on our site.
    Our Anti-Spam Policy which sets out information about our anti-spam endeavours.

    Information about us
    www.fifocapital.ie is a site operated by Fifo Capital International Ltd (“We”). We are registered in New Zealand under company number 3856796 and have our registered office at 170 Parnell Road, Parnell, Auckland 1151, New Zealand. Our main trading address is 135 Parnell Road, Parnell, Auckland 1151, New Zealand.

    Changes to these terms
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    Contact us

    To contact us, please mail to Fifo Capital International Ltd, PO Box 137375 Parnell, Auckland 1151, New Zealand, or email [email protected]
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  • Anti-Spam Policy

    What is spam?
    In the context of electronic messaging, spam refers to unsolicited, bulk or indiscriminate messages, typically sent for commercial purposes. “Electronic messaging” covers emails, instant messaging, SMS and other mobile phone messaging, but does not cover normal voice-to-voice communication by telephone.

    An electronic message may constitute spam if it:
    – is commercial in nature – i.e. it could be construed as offering a commercial transaction, such as goods or services for sale, or merely directing the recipient to a location where a commercial transaction could take place – is sent without the prior consent of the recipient;
    – fails to include accurate information about the sender; and
    – does not include a functional unsubscribe facility.

    Fifo Capital will take all necessary and reasonable steps required under relevant current Spam legislation to ensure that any commercial electronic messages sent to you do not constitute spam.

    Consent
    Fifo Capital will take reasonable steps to ensure that it has obtained your express consent prior to sending you electronic commercial messages about Fifo Capital’s products and services. Express consent may come in various ways, including subscribing to our mailing list, filing in a form, ticking a consent box to receive advertising or messages on our website, or consenting over the phone.

    Where it is impracticable to obtain your consent before sending electronic commercial message to you, we may infer that you have consented to receiving electronic commercial message. Inferred consent can occur:
    – via an existing business or other relationship with Fifo Capital, and where there is reasonable expectation of receiving commercial electronic messages; or
    – via conspicuous publication of a work-related electronic address; and
    – it is accessible to the public, or a section of the public
    – the subject of the message is directly related to the role or function of the recipient; and
    – the address is not accompanied by a statement saying no commercial messages are wanted.

    Identification
    Any commercial electronic message sent by Fifo Capital will include a clear and accurate identification information about Fifo Capital, the sender of the message and how we can be contacted. Fifo Capital will take reasonable steps to ensure that the identification information about Fifo Capital is accurate for a period of 30 days after the day on which you receive the electronic commercial message.

    Unsubscribing Policy
    Under Spam legislation, every commercial electronic message must contain a functional and legitimate ‘unsubscribe’ facility. This is an electronic address the recipient can use to tell the sender they do not wish to receive messages.

    Fifo Capital will take reasonable steps to ensure that:
    – all commercial electronic messages sent by us will include a functional way for the message’s recipient to indicate that they wish to unsubscribe from any future messages;
    – our unsubscribe links in any electric commercial message remain functional for at least 30 days after the original commercial electronic message was sent;
    – it allows the unsubscribe message to be sent to whoever authorised the sending of the message;
    the unsubscribe instructions are presented in a clear and conspicuous way;
    – a request to unsubscribe is honoured within five-(5)working days;
    – unsubscribing is at low or no cost, to the recipient.

    If you receive a message from Fifo Capital that is not in accordance with the above, contact us and the matter will be promptly investigated and resolved.

    Fifo Capital Unsubscribe Process
    The e-Marketing systems Fifo Capital uses for electronic communication allow recipients the option to automatically unsubscribe from any electronic commercial message.

    All manual unsubscribe requests go through the Marketing Manager or Operations Manager (as a secondary person). The necessary details for unsubscribing from any electronic commercial message sent by Fifo Capital are as follows:
    SMS: Subject Line: ‘Unsubscribe’
    Mail: Subject Line: ‘Remove’
    Post To: The relevant office as listed on the email
    Email: Subject Line: ‘Remove’
    Fax: Subject Line: ‘Remove’

    Fifo Capital Marketing
    Queries that are made with Fifo Capital through our marketing channels are gathered and kept confidentially. Fifo Capital may use some of this information to market its current and new products to customers. All marketing sent by Fifo Capital allows the recipient to opt out (unsubscribe) at no cost. If the recipient chooses to exercise that right they will be removed from any further marketing communication from Fifo Capital. Fifo Capital will not use electronic address harvesting software, or lists which have been generated using software, for the purposes of sending unsolicited commercial electronic messages.

    Contact Fifo Capital
    Please contact our Anti-Spam officer at [email protected] if you have any concerns or complaints about this policy or about our use of personal information or other privacy issues.

  • Information about our use of cookies

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  • Data Protection Policy

    See and print Fifo Capital’s data-protection-policy.

  • Terms and Conditions

    Fifo Capital understands time is critical when it comes to managing your cash flow – so our process is aimed to be as simple as possible.
    A Fifo Capital facility approval typically takes around 24 hours to set-up and depending on the required information supplied by customers, transfer of funds can take place in as little as four hours.

    The following covers the terms and conditions required for a four hour funds transfer to take place;

    1. Fifo Capital will tell the proposed client if the application is successful to receive funding. We can accept or reject the application at our sole and absolute discretion. If we accept the application the cash flow finance services will be provided solely in accordance with the documents we agree with the proposed client.
    2. Fifo Capital reserves the right to reject previously approved applications without notice and/or consultation.
    3. Fifo Capital’s application consists of a number of forms, however, not limited to fully completed and signed; Application, Receivables Finance Facility Terms and Conditions, Guarantee, Offer to Sell, and Privacy Consent forms
    4. To be eligible for a four hour funds transfer in relation to an approved application, the proposed customer must request or apply to Fifo Capital in writing before 12noon on the same business day. Such a request doesn’t guarantee the transfer will take place or funds cleared in the customer’s bank account within the four hour period.
    5. Should a four hour funding transfer request be approved, such a transfer can only be facilitated on a business day. A transfer request is not available on public or bank holidays, or weekends.
    6. Four hour funding transfers may incur a fee as detailed within the application.
    7. Fifo Capital’s aligned banks or financial institutions have the right to reject a four hour funding transfer request. Fifo Capital and its aligned banks are not liable for any loss or damages resulting from a funding transfer request not taking place or funds being cleared within a four hour period.
    8. Fifo Capital is a franchise business operation. Fifo Capital UK Ltd is the master franchisee and is therefore not responsible for the actions or inactions of its franchisees in relation to any funds transfer timing.
    9. Fifo Capital is not responsible for any loss or damages incurred or to be incurred by the would be or existing customer should a transfer not take place within or cleared funds not be received within a four hour period.

    To find out more about the full terms and conditions relating to our 4 hour funds transfer please contact Fifo Capital on 07812 334 564