In the world of software development, Product Managers must integrate customer insights — delights, frustrations, and pain points — into product development. During startup mode, it’s easy to interact with customers every day, inputting their feedback directly into product roadmaps.
As your user base grows, having those quality 1:1 interactions with users becomes more difficult. You need a rigorous process for scaling customer feedback that makes it easier to collect data in both the early and later stages of your product lifecycle.
While the buzzword “customer-centricity” gets thrown around often, there is usually an accompanying lack of understanding of:
- How to gather customer insights in a structured manner.
- How to gather those insights at scale to make data-driven decisions.
Luckily, this is something we can help you do. Read on as we outline a roadmap to scale your end-user feedback.
Clearly define the user journey to identify where the customers are struggling with your product
The customer journey map, also known as the CJ map, is a visual representation of the customer experience that will help you put yourself in your customer’s shoes. The map includes all the necessary and relevant information for understanding and analyzing the customer’s experience with your product. Done well, it allows you to spot and then address areas where the customer experience is sub-par.
Every user goes into an interaction with your product with certain expectations. When these expectations are not met, it leads to unsatisfied customers. Journey maps will help you uncover and address problematic experiences.
To make full use of the journey map:
- Plot out the key touchpoints of the journey that will make or break the customer experience. In doing this, you’ll gain an understanding of every interaction the customer will have with your product.
- Analyze the touchpoints and determine where product adjustments are needed to optimize the experience. End-user feedback will help you refine your understanding of where your customer journey bottlenecks are.
With this accomplished, you can begin to translate customer pain points into actionable product insights. First, though, you need to get the feedback.
Employ the right technique and technology to integrate customer insights
To gather accurate, relevant customer feedback at scale, you need to:
- ask the right questions
- ask questions in the appropriate context
Asking a question such as “how satisfied are you with this product or service?” gets the best results when the user is actively engaged with your application. Asking in this way combines immediacy with emotion: users are mentally and emotionally invested in their experience, and the feedback is collected with this experience top of mind. It also leads to a better survey response rate.
To choose the right question to ask, decide what you are trying to learn to optimize your product. Having a clear idea of exactly which metrics you want to measure from the survey — and what you hope to learn — will help you craft the right survey questions.
Create targeted and easy-to-respond surveys to get the insights you need
Surveys are a great way to gain customer feedback and are more scalable than methods such as 1:1 interviews and focus groups. Be aware that surveys also leave substantial room for error and survey biases, which could result in your basing business decisions on skewed survey results.
Survey bias happens when the surveyor introduces systematic error into sampling or testing by selecting or encouraging one answer over another. Use these techniques to increase response rate and get well-rounded data:
- Track a metric over time. A “set and forget” in-app CSAT survey will ask a few users for feedback every day — giving you a constant pulse of user feedback about your product. You’ll never miss a trend, and you’ll be able to track overall sentiment over time.
- Make sure that your sample represents a diverse set of users. For example, if you measure net promoter score (NPS) with loyal customers or customers who are “fans” of your product, the survey results are more likely to be positive. This can be misleading when making informed product decisions.
- Limit the number of questions asked. It is more effective to ask one great question than 10 minutes of questions. No one, including yourself, has time or energy to finish a 10-minute long survey! Conducting a micro survey early and often is a much better way to improve response rate and get insight into the actual problem you are trying to solve.
- Close the loop with respondents. Ensure your internal teams, such as software developers and customer success, respond to customers who provide feedback. This is a tangible way to build customer empathy among the team and ultimately serves to deliver a product that everyone desires.
Get feedback on every product iteration, and scale up your efforts as you go
If you have ever been a product user, you understand that receiving constant surveys can be irritating. Every Product Manager should acquire and master the skill of finding a balance between how many surveys to send out while gathering pertinent information in each iteration. You should have a clear understanding of what metrics to measure and devise a plan to obtain those metrics in a consistent way.
Set a plan for how many and what kind of customers you want to gain insights from. Sample your customers strategically using advanced targeting to cover relevant viewpoints you need to hear. Furthermore, find ways to automate turning customer insights into business intelligence by employing advanced techniques such as Artificial Intelligence and machine learning. Doing so will help scale your customer surveying operations and will leave less room for human error.
You will also thank yourself later when the number of users starts to grow, and you have already figured out a way to scale end-user feedback!
Segment customer feedback to guide product development priorities
Okay, so you have gathered a variety of customer insights. Now how do you use them to prioritize your work for the next sprint?
As a Product Manager, you should have a well-defined plan to turn customer insights into product insights. This requires a clear vision of where you want your product to go in the long- and short-term. Based on the goals that you established with your internal and external stakeholders, you back your next product roadmap or feature idea with both qualitative and quantitative data that you collected. Now, the only hurdle for you to overcome is prioritization, but congrats — you should have excellent customer data to determine what to build next!
Segmenting customer feedback by business drivers is critical to prioritization. First, determine your business goals, then use customer feedback to prioritize your activities. Is it a business priority to make the onboarding process more facile? If so, then segment by the number of days an end-user is spending in the app, so new user feedback is not lost in the din of VoC. You could also segment by role, region, ethnicity, and high- vs. low-value customers.
Quality Customer Data
Collecting customer data is easy. Collecting quality customer data at scale is not, especially if you’re not collecting quality data from the very beginning. As a Product Manager, it is your responsibility to collect data around customer experience and turn those insights into effective business strategies while scaling end-user empathy. Sounds tough, right? Integrating these outlined steps can get you one step closer to your goal of understanding and advocating for the voice of the customer.
Help scale your end-user feedback today with Wootric.
Neha is a Product Manager for Product Gym and has been involved in coaching and mentoring students on their journey to Product Management and agile coaching. Her past experiences include working in a healthcare company on both the clinical and the business side. During the pandemic, Neha has picked up a couple of different hobbies, including surfing, cooking, and bouldering.