What is the Voice of the Customer?
Voice of the Customer (VoC) is a vital customer experience tool. We use it to map customer journeys, understand customer needs and improve products, services and customer touchpoints.
Businesses use Voice of the Customer in one-off projects and continuous improvement, we can summarise the steps:
- Gather data – identify the richest sources of data for your business. They include surveys, review sites, social media, website analytics, customer services (people and tools), emails and SMS. Pull the feedback into one place with the metadata you need (e.g., customer name).
- Analyse data – find patterns and trends using numerical scores and qualitative feedback (words). Where possible, combine with customer and business data to understand how the feedback reflects customer behaviour and business performance.
- Present and use data – share the data to gain agreement for action. Decide what to do either embedding good practices or improving low spots in customer experience. Then do it!
- Confirm and celebrate success – continue listening to customers to confirm your action has changed perceptions, look to business and performance measures to understand benefits. Thank your team and celebrate success or learn lessons.
Voice of the Customer can resolve individual customer issues, called the inner loop and prevent re-occurrence of issues by improving performance, called the outer loop.
Voice of the Customer software helps businesses gather, analyse and present data, taking the administrative strain from you and removing bias. Some platforms also help choose the best actions and show the impact your changes have on customers.
Why listen to the Voice of the Customer?
Whether you want to increase focus on customers or are already customer-centric, listening to customers is the only way to know what they think and need. By responding to feedback, you can rapidly improve customer experience.
You’ll know you have done an outstanding job when customer experience measures like NPS, Customer Satisfaction (CSAT) and Customer Effort Score (CES) improve. But the benefits go beyond these numbers and quickly show up in Customer Churn, Cost of Sales, Customer Lifetime Value and Cost of Operation.
After that, board papers and accounts show greater revenues and profit.
Can SMEs use Voice of the Customer tools?
Using a VoC platform is an easy decision for multinational corporations. They see the value in automated, consistent data collection, analysis and presentation. Their employees can focus improving business practices and delivering excellent customer experiences.
But, and not to put too fine a point on it, the platforms huge corporations buy can do everything and come with a commensurate price tag. Thankfully, we live in a world where technology helps start-ups build excellent solutions. And the vendors in this study are great examples of passion meets business know-how, meets innovation and customer focus.
Their size means that most are focused on a specific market, this brings differences between them which make them ideal for some clients and less appropriate for others. This study doesn’t rank the vendors or talk about weaknesses. Each is brilliant and dedicated to listening to customers to help their clients succeed, they just have different approaches and different strengths.
This assessment presents consistent information about each vendor, their platform and consultancy services, see the table below for a quick summary, visit each vendor’s page or sign up for the full review to use it to short-list the right platforms for your needs. If you need help with that, the white paper will help.
Click here to learn about the assessment process.
The common features
A sea of (feedback) sources
All the tools interact with an array of feedback sources from surveys to social media, call recordings to chatbots.
A drove of dashboards
All these platforms present data to support decision-making processes. All can be tailored and most are highly graphically, with dashboards clients can filter by customer, system, geographic, etc. Clients can set alerts using a variety of triggers and conditions and many provide regular reports with more interpretation.
A surfeit of support
Each vendor recognises clients need more than data to satisfy their customers. We see a range of service offers from implementation support to education and action taking. Some vendors include support in their pricing, others charge for consulting services.
A legion of lessons
Each platform continues to develop based on the feedback of its clients – updating functionality to meet changing client needs.
Each platform has grown inline with its clients’ needs and its own beliefs and philosophies and each is worthy of consideration by any SME or small corporate looking for a partner in its use of customer feedback.
Use the table below to start your comparison and visit each vendor of interest using the links in the header. If you want a shortcut to your short list, please sign up for the full review.
|Hello Customer||LimetropyLimetropy||LoopVOC||MyCustomerLens||OMBEA Insights||OPINATOR||sandsiv+||Surviate||Wootric||InMoment|
|Inner loop (individual issues)|
|Outer loop (systemic issues)|
|Employee experience (VoE)|
|Total price £, ££, £££||££||£-££||£||£||£||££||£-££||£||££||£££|
|Celebrates positive feedback|
CX 😊 Business ⩩ Performance 📈