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Using Customer Feedback to Improve Your Business

As a business owner, feedback is generally accepted as a way to make improvements to your shop or services, and is even a helpful method to short-term and long-term business decisions. For most shop owners and repair businesses, customer feedback is often immediate, allowing you to act upon it quickly.

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By Ed Sunkin
Editor, Underhood Service Magazine

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Feedback. We all seem to get it — whether we request it or not.

But, as a business owner, feedback is generally accepted as a way to make improvements to your shop or services, and is even a helpful method to short-term and long-term business decisions.

For most shop owners and repair businesses, customer feedback is often immediate, allowing you to act upon it quickly. 

For example, maybe a customer complained that their vehicle interior was returned to them dirty or with grease smudges. A new customer policy could be implemented where your techs or a service writer inspects the vehicle and wipes up any repair-related dirt prior to contacting the owner for pickup.

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Or, a customer may compliment you for your shop for providing a rental or courtesy vehicle for the few days their car may be in the shop due to a hard-to-locate part or intermittent driveability issue. Since this policy seems to be working out, it may force you to consider renewing a lease or rental agreement with such a provider for another year.

A recent article from Inc.com provided some tips on ways to gather customer  feedback. However, what you do with this feedback is up to you. And, you shouldn’t let any of the negative feedback you may receive hurt your feelings. Rather, that feedback is a great way to learn from things not working and improve your business.

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Some of the ways to gather feedback from Inc.com include:
• Empower customer-facing employees — Create a culture among your staff who are good at not just hearing the customer, but listening to them and acting upon their  feedback.

• Make someone responsible for combining and coordinating the constructive customer feedback, and act or create ideas using that information in order to improve the business.

• If you have the money, hire a third-party to gather customer feedback. These consultants can use various techniques such as focus groups and surveys to really get an insight as to what your customers are saying about your shop.

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 • Check your customers’ behaviors in the online world and offer a comment section on your website. Also, offer instant polls and online surveys on your website.

We’d like to hear how your business is utilizing the customer feedback that it receives. Please use the Leave A Comment tool at the bottom of this article to share your experiences.

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