Let’s Talk Business: May 20, 2022

Business owners, large and small, make hundreds of decisions every single week. How many of those decisions, though, are backed by hard data?

Monthly reports like balance sheets and cash flow statements enable businesspeople to make data-driven decisions regarding growth and scale. A sometimes-overlooked report that should be consulted is customer loyalty.

Customer loyalty is not found in a single report, but it’s worth compiling key metrics each month to understand whether your business is retaining customer or simply churning new customers. Create a report that summarizes key indicators like customer retention rate, negative churn, purchase habits, referral traffic, and social media mentions.

Some of this data can be found in your point-of-sale system or loyalty program. Others are in your marketing analytics. Since the cost of acquiring a new customer is five times higher than retaining an existing one, it is definitely worth keeping tabs on whether your customers have a good experience with your product or service.

Customer surveys can reveal a broken process affecting the customer’s experience. To conduct customer service surveys, decide the goal of the feedback and the type of questions you would like answered. Information gathered via ongoing surveys help you track your progress toward goals with key performance indicators like negative churn, customer retention rates, and more.

Customer surveys provide opportunities to measure customer satisfaction and identify any miscommunications or roadblocks by asking specific questions regarding the customer experience. The data provided by your surveys is based on real insights and opinions rather than on assumptions. This solid information helps businesses pinpoint their strengths and weaknesses.

Best practices for creating surveys include varying the question types (between open-ended, yes/no, and rating scales), using survey software that autosaves user progress, and promoting on social media and via email. Research indicates that users give more thoughtful feedback the fewer questions there are. So if you value in-depth feedback and customer insights, ensure your survey only includes a handful of questions.

Some examples of questions used on customer surveys include:

  • On a scale from 1-10, how likely are you to recommend our product to your friends?
  • How much do you agree or disagree with the following statement regarding your customer service experience with your latest purchase?
  • Have you ever contacted our customer service? If so, were all your problems resolved to your satisfaction?
  • How might we improve our website’s navigation to ensure a seamless user experience.

Using various types of questions will help you gain a better understanding of where you’re falling short, why and how you’re falling short, and how you can best improve these problem areas.

After you begin receiving feedback from your customers, thank them for their insights and communicate how you will take their feedback into consideration–as well as your plan to improve things. Your commitment to customer satisfaction will go a long way in building long-term loyalty and trust.

It’s a great day in Emporia!


“Let’s Talk Business” is a weekly column of the Emporia Area Chamber of Commerce and Visit Emporia. The mission of the Chamber is to be proactive in creating an environment for business and community success, guided by the vision that positive attitudes promote positive actions. Contact us at 620-342-1600 or chamber@emporiakschamber.org and visit our website at www.emporiakschamber.org.