5 Types of Customer Feedback You Should Be Collecting (and How to Use It)

5 Types of Customer Feedback You Should Be Collecting (and How to Use It)
Charlene Boutin
Charlene Boutin Dec 30, 2022 — 11 min read

As an ecommerce brand owner, you’ll have to make important decisions almost every day.

And you can make better-informed decisions if you create a habit of collecting customer feedback regularly. You’ll know what your customers value most and what they feel is missing from your online store.

What are the best ways to collect customer feedback? And what can you do once you have this valuable data in your arsenal?

Let’s cover everything you need to know about gathering customer feedback for ecommerce businesses.


Why is customer feedback important for ecommerce stores?

Customers of ecommerce stores have a lot to say. And here’s why you should listen to them.

Your customers are 2.6 more likely to purchase from you again if they receive a five-star experience from your store. And one of the best ways to make sure you’re providing that experience is to ask customers how you’re doing.

For instance, you could assume your customers prefer your live chat feature and decide to invest in scaling that support. But what if your customers actually find it clunky to use and vastly prefer responding to your newsletters instead?

There’s no way to understand what’s going on in your customers’ minds without getting their feedback.

Plus, your customers have big expectations from you. 66% of consumers say they want brands to know what their unique needs are.

And because only 34% of businesses treat customers as individuals, you’ve got an opportunity to stand out and become your customers’ favorite brand.

Customer expectations from companies’ level of empathy is rarely met

We’ll cover some ideas of what you can do with your customer data a bit later. But for now, remember this:

Obtaining customer feedback will help you improve everything about your ecommerce business.

5 types of customer data to start collecting

When you create a new customer feedback form, you should first consider what you’re trying to find out. Sure, you can get information about what your customers like or dislike about your products, but there’s more to customer data than that.

Let’s cover 5 customer survey ideas so you can start collecting valuable data for your ecommerce business.

1. Post-purchase experience opinions

You’ve just converted a visitor into a paying customer — awesome!

But you can turn that conversion into something even more valuable by collecting immediate feedback in the post-purchase experience.

Did your customer hesitate before purchasing? If so, what made them almost not buy? Did they have to struggle through the entire process to complete their order?

The data you get from new customers will help you win back some of the sales you may be losing. Plus, you’re showing your new customer that you care about their experience. You’ll score points on the loyalty score.

You can include a star rating for quick feedback, but you should also give an option for customers to leave detailed notes about their experience.

💡 Keep in mind that post-purchase feedback shouldn’t ask about the quality of your products yet. This type of survey is intended for customers to fill out immediately after completing their order.

2. Customer satisfaction

“Customer satisfaction” is the type of data people typically think about when discussing customer feedback as a whole.

And while it can take many forms, it boils down to one main purpose:

How satisfied are customers with your products, customer service, and shopping experience?

MeUndies uses email communication to collect customer feedback and measure the level of customer satisfaction

Some examples of questions you can ask to understand customer satisfaction include (but aren’t limited to):

  • What did you like the most about our products?
  • What did you dislike the most about our products?
  • If there was one thing you could change about our products/customer service/ checkout process/etc, what would it be?
  • What’s your most important priority when shopping for [your category of products]?
  • How likely are you to purchase again from us?
  • What could be improved about your experience with our customer service team?
  • How likely are you to return to our website?
  • Why did you choose our product over a competitor’s?
  • What is one word you would use to describe our brand/product?

You don’t have to include all these questions in your surveys. The longer the survey is, the more people will drop off before completing it — but the more valuable each answer will be. Weigh this balance carefully.

Customer satisfaction also includes product reviews, so feel free to ask for reviews on their own, too.

3. Cart abandonment reasons

Abandoned carts are the bane of ecommerce brands! It’s one of the biggest and most common ecommerce challenges small businesses need to mitigate.

Would an abandoned cart coupon help? Or was the checkout experience too complicated? Was your customer purchasing on a mobile device and found your mobile website too clunky?

Collecting feedback about why people abandoned their carts is the best way to find out.

Cart abandonment surveys are an alternative to abandoned cart emails. Instead of trying to win the sale back, you’re trying to help your customer with their issue.

Example of a cart abandonment survey sent via email

If you implement this type of feedback form, make sure to have someone on your team who’s available to respond quickly.

You may be able to save the sale!

Alternatively, you can survey abandoning customers right before they leave – using an exit-intent survey:

These surveys are great to ask why a customer is leaving halfway through checkout, while they’re still on your website. Plus, it’s the only way to collect feedback from customers who aren’t on your list yet.

4. Customer loyalty

Are your customers loyal to your brand? Or are they one bad interaction away from switching to your competitors?

Customer loyalty surveys are not the same as customer satisfaction surveys. Instead, you can use them to calculate your Net Promoter Score, which is a value between 1 and 10. It represents how likely customers are to recommend your brand to a friend.

Evaluating customer loyalty can help you fix the issues that are pushing customers away — which, in turn, can help you gain more repeat customers.

But it can also help you find your superfans. When you know who your most loyal customers are, you can focus your efforts on them when trying to gain brand ambassadors.

To calculate your Net Promoter Score, all you need to do is ask your customers:

“How likely are you to recommend [name of your brand] to a friend or family member?”

Give respondents a choice from 1 to 10.

Your customer loyalty survey can stand on its own. Alternatively, you can incorporate it into a longer survey like Lovevery did:

Lovevery collects customer feedback and measures loyalty using NPS surveys

Make sure to send customer loyalty surveys only to your paying customers. Subscribers on your email list who haven’t purchased from you yet won’t be a good source of data for this type of survey.

5. Proactive troubleshooting

All of the examples above focus on trying to fix a problem after it has already happened.

But you can also be proactive by using dynamic forms.

For example, you can create an inactivity survey that appears when a website visitor stays on a product page or checkout page for a long time without moving on with the purchase. When this happens, it’s good practice to ask whether there’s something stopping them from purchasing:

Abandoned cart surveys we mentioned earlier are another example of proactive surveys.

While you may not be able to fix the issue by proactively asking about it, your customer may also persevere when they see you take interest in their issues. No matter what they decide to do, you’ll have invaluable data to fix the issues for future customers.

5 Best ways to collect customer feedback

To collect all 5 types of customer data, you’ll need a variety of survey types. Here are 5 effective ways to collect customer feedback everywhere online.

1. Dynamic website forms

Dynamic website forms and popups can be triggered based on customer behaviors so that you can collect feedback at just the right moment.

You can use Getsitecontrol to easily set these up on your website. Here are examples of the templates you can customize in minutes:

Dynamic popups are ideal for all 5 types of customer feedback, especially post-purchase and cart abandonment. And for proactive customer feedback, they’re critical.

While you can create triggers to send emails based on customer behaviors, customers won’t immediately see those emails. On the other hand, they’ll see popups while they’re scrolling your website, which allows you to take action before it’s too late.

Popups are also perfect for one-question surveys like the one below:

In addition to receiving valuable feedback, your dynamic survey popups can even help you segment your email list! For example, the opt-in form on the Knix website asks customers what they’re shopping for:

Knix uses an opt-in form to collect customer feedback

Not only will this brand learn what customers want most, but they can also tag new email subscribers based on their preferences. When it’s time for them to send promotional emails, they can create more targeted campaigns.

2. Live chat conversations

Live chat boxes are a great way to collect customer feedback. Whether you’ve got a live agent available or rely on AI instead, live chat tools can help you guide your customers in the right direction after you’ve collected the feedback.

Hemp Hound uses live chat conversations to obtain customer feedback on the website

Live chat is especially useful when you have a real person available to speak to customers. When this happens, you can have an organic conversation with real shoppers.

Your team member can ask follow-up survey questions to gain more insight on any answers they receive. It’s the closest you can get to speaking to customers one-on-one in a brick-and-mortar setting.

3. Email surveys

Customer feedback surveys are yet another reason why email marketing is so important.

You’ve already got your customers’ email addresses — why not take advantage of that and survey them directly?

And because surveys aren’t promotional material, you don’t need your customers to opt into your email list to ask for their opinion. As long as they’ve purchased from you, you’re good to go.

Fitbit surveys paying customers via email

Using email is ideal to send surveys that are longer than just one or two questions, unlike a website popup. You can use them for:

  • General customer satisfaction
  • Product reviews
  • Customer loyalty surveys
  • Cart abandonment surveys

Because you have more information about email contacts than you have about random website visitors, you can send more tailored surveys.

For example, you can ask for feedback about specific products or collections. You could even send a survey to long-time customers about what they like and don’t like about your newest collections compared to your older products.

4. Social media polls

Social media doesn’t give you the personalized touch you get from email, but it can reach a wider audience.

Keep in mind that a social media audience will be more general than the people on your email list or your website visitors. That means social media isn’t the place to ask about customer satisfaction or brand loyalty.

For example, you can create polls on social media to get some ideas of what your customers prefer.

Example of a basic poll that can be hosted by a brand on Instagram

Or it can be as simple as asking what’s in their sales cart:

Black Bird Fabrics brand surveys their followers on Instagram and asks to respond in comments

Make sure to take social media feedback with a grain of salt. Those who provide feedback may not be the ones spending the most on your ecommerce website.

However, social media polls can indicate trend preferences which can inform your future collections.

5. Collection of reviews and testimonials from 3rd party websites

With this final collection method, you won’t need to do any additional asking. Instead, you can check out reviews and testimonials your customers wrote on 3rd party websites such as Trustpilot:

Trustpilot is an excellent 3rd-party platform to collect customer feedback for your online store

However, it’s still a good idea to ask your customers to leave these reviews, too. If you don’t ask, you can’t be certain your customers will proactively visit these 3rd party sites when they have something positive to say.

What to do with your collected customer feedback data — 5 ideas

Once you’ve gathered some customer data, what should you do with it, exactly? Let’s keep with the pattern of fives and explore 5 different ways to put your valuable customer feedback to use.

1. Inform your messaging and copywriting

Let’s say you need to revamp your website copy or come up with a brand-new social media strategy. You want to attract your ideal customer’s attention with on-brand messaging that resonates.

Skip the guessing game and use your newly acquired voice-of-customer data to inform your copywriting process.

There are two main ways your customer data can influence your messaging:

  1. Understanding your customer avatar’s personality and what drives them to purchase from you, and;
  2. Adopting the exact language they use to talk about your products.

With the former, you can compile all of your feedback to create an ideal customer avatar. And whenever you review your messaging or write some copy, you can ask yourself:

What would my ideal customer avatar resonate with?

With the latter, you can pull direct quotes from your customer feedback forms to make your copy more realistic.

For example, let’s say you’re selling loungewear that looks good enough to turn on your camera during a Zoom meeting. Before gathering customer feedback, your tagline could sound like:

Calm and comfort without compromising your fashion sense.

But after collecting customer feedback, you realize your ideal customer doesn’t care about being fashionable. One of your customers may even say she feels ashamed of the disapproving scowl her boss gave her the last time she wore a loose hoodie to a Zoom call.

With that information, you could rework your tagline to something like:

Cozy loungewear your boss approves of.

With your customers’ permission, you could even use their feedback in social media posts or emails to provide some social proof!

2. Improve your products

There are endless possibilities for improving any type of product. But there isn’t one objective best choice.

Your customers can help you decide which improvements take priority. But they can also help you spot improvement opportunities you wouldn’t have thought of on your own.

Lovevery uses a survey to ask customers how they can improve their kits

Even a team with a solid quality assurance process won’t have the same perspective as a paying customer. That’s why it’s so important to use your data to continuously improve your products if you see a trend in your customer feedback.

3. Build a better customer service experience

Products aren’t the only part of your online store you can improve! The feedback you receive can help you provide better customer service, too.

For example, you can add pre-existing questions to a live chat and decide what questions to include based on what customers ask about most often:

Cheekbone implements insights from customer feedback surveys to improve their customer service experience

You’ll also know what parts of your customer service to invest in if something’s amiss. For instance, insights collected from customer feedback may show whether you should hire a new customer service rep or if you need to rework your onboarding.

4. Fix a broken sales funnel

Your sales funnel is the process every customer goes through, from first contact to purchase.

It’ll usually look something like this:

  • Click through to your website
  • Navigate your website
  • Add products in their cart
  • Start the checkout process
  • Complete checkout information
  • Purchase confirmed

But if you’ve got some broken steps in that process, your bounce rate and cart abandonment rate may be higher than average.

For example, is your home page too slow to load? Does it take too many steps to complete the checkout process? Is the “Proceed to checkout” button hard to find?

Use what you learn from your customer feedback forms to patch any holes in your sales and checkout process. And be sure to optimize for mobile devices, too.

5. Develop new product ideas

Just like product improvement, there are endless directions in which you could take your new product development.

But what’s more likely to sell? What products do your most loyal customers want to see?

Based on what customers like and dislike about your existing products, you can develop new product ideas. You can even ask for product suggestions if that’s a route you’re willing to take.

An examples of customer feedback being taken into consideration to create new products

Implement these creative ways to collect customer feedback

5 types of customer feedback, 5 collection methods, and 5 ways to put that feedback into use — now you have plenty of ideas to start collecting insights from your customers.

With Getsitecontrol, you can do it all — create website surveys and follow up with customers via email. Give Getsitecontrol a spin for free to see how easy it can be to create customer feedback forms.

Charlene Boutin is a freelance content writer & email marketing strategist for hire specializing in helping Ecommerce and SaaS businesses increase conversions by growing authentic relationships with their audience. She loves helping business owners tell their unique stories to capture the hearts of more customers.

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