Grow my business

5 ways customer feedback drives the growth your business needs

Close-up photograph of a person seated at a table working on a laptop. The laptop is displaying a graph in Excel.What started as one person’s need for affordable design assistance in Denver, Colorado, has turned into a thriving e-design company with a mission to make interior design services more accessible to more people. Founded in 2014, customer happiness has always been Havenly’s first priority. As the head of analytics, Bill Sherby knows that each customer who feels like they’ve attained their own sense of home by the end of the design process, is a customer who would recommend Havenly to a friend. And the key to Havenly designers hitting the right aesthetic mark—and ultimately the company’s success—is made possible through his team’s ability to identify data points to collect and analyze from as much customer feedback as possible.

While customer feedback may just be one part of the data that is collected by Havenly’s team, there are several different aspects to this data that are valuable to look at on their own, each providing specific, helpful insights about the business. Here are five ways Bill Sherby recommends looking at customer feedback to improve your business:

1. “Gather customer feedback throughout the customer experience. At Havenly we collect customer ratings on what the designers are delivering throughout the process. This gives feedback to our designers in real time to help them adjust their styling and sourcing to better suit each customer.”

2. “Capture NPS (Net Promoter Score) ratings from your customers—and ask them, ‘why?’ It’s important to understand at a high level whether your customers are happy enough with your business to recommend it to their friends. We use the open-ended responses to either address customer concerns or emphasize our successes with the service, in order to improve the experience for future customers. This in turn creates more customer advocates overtime via word of mouth organic growth. NPS surveys are an easy way to keep a pulse on this dynamic, and by asking ‘why,’ your customers will tell you the major pain points they run into.”

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3. “Use your gathered happiness metrics to segment your customers. When you take note of commonalities between customers—those who were happy, and those who were less happy—these insights spark ideas that can be researched further through additional interviews, surveys, and usability tests. For instance, at Havenly, we found that some customers needed lighter touches, so we developed a new design service that could answer little one-off questions, offer furniture recommendations, or just provide support or advice, without the customer needing to invest in a full design package.”


4. “Take steps to correct ‘unhappy customer’ experiences and convert them into promoters. In the early days of any small business, the primary two things to pay attention to are, are your customers coming back, and are your customers happy and referring other people? The NPS surveys tell us how likely customers are to recommend the Havenly services to somebody that they know, but our goal in bringing a comfortably-designed space to everyone only succeeds if we diagnose the cases where we go wrong, and solve them. We have seen many cases where an unhappy customer was addressed by our customer service team and we saw them return.”


5. “Create a culture centered around the customer experience. When everyone in the company knows how they are performing against a joint goal it enables self-motivation and leads to happier and higher performing employees, which in turns leads to happier customers. At Havenly, we display our NPS scores on a dashboard in our office, and we also have a business intelligence infrastructure that shares additional success metrics with everyone so we are all on the same page about how we are servicing our customers.”


Overall, Sherby recommends capturing and analyzing data in spreadsheets. “Find out how your customers viewed their experience, if they are returning, and if they are recommending the product or service to others,” says Sherby. “Staying disciplined towards that consumer is going to help drive the growth that you need.”



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