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Feedback vs reviews: What’s the difference?

Customer feedback and reviews are an integral part of businesses across the globe and are growing in increasing importance. Nowadays both feedback and reviews are being utilised to transform operational structures to prioritise the customer. They are integral for understanding untapped areas of growth and honing in on problem areas that need to be prioritised. The push to create a customer-centric business is driven by feedback, and that won’t be going away any time soon. That’s why it’s important you know how to use both feedback and reviews for the betterment of your business.

The terms customer feedback and reviews are often used interchangeably, however, they are not synonyms of each other. While they do have similarities, customer feedback and reviews diverge in a few ways. This article will explore the difference between feedback and reviews, as well as why both are necessary for any business to grow. We will also explain how Review Tui can help customers to gain both feedback and reviews.

What’s customer feedback?

Customer feedback is solicited feedback which often comes in the form of surveys. These can be requested via email (for example, an order confirmation email), website, social media, over the phone, and more. Essentially, customer feedback is a customer’s opinion gained after an organisation has asked for it. This can be concerning a product or service and can be requested at different stages in the customer journey. It’s internal, with only the organisation seeing that feedback.

What’s a review?

Reviews are typically non-solicited feedback gathered on an open, third-party platform where anyone can share their thoughts, positive or negative. Commonly, the business being reviewed cannot filter or delete negative reviews. The only action they can take is to respond and attempt to rectify the situation.

Every time you Google a business and check out its star rating you’re looking at a review. However, reviews aren’t limited to just Google star ratings. In fact, the majority of businesses utilise reviews. Whether it’s looking on Trip Advisor or Trivago to see if the weight of the feedback is positive or negative, or investigating the Facebook reviews of a product, reviews are being used just about everywhere.

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The difference between feedback and reviews

A simple way to look at the difference between feedback and reviews is that one is solicited (feedback) and the other is not (reviews). Feedback also tends to remain internal for improvement purposes unless it’s positive, in which case it becomes a testimonial. Reviews are always public and cannot be removed regardless of the customer’s sentiment. While there can be exemptions, as a general rule of thumb we tend to define reviews and feedback as follows:

  • Feedback: Solicited and internal.
  • Review: Unsolicited and independent.

While you may be thinking that feedback seems to be a more ideal option for businesses as they can keep negative comments private, reviews are equally as important. This is because customers value seeing the raw, unfiltered opinions of their peers. However, both feedback and reviews have their clear advantages which we discuss below.

The benefits of customer feedback

Have you ever wanted to take a peek inside your customers’ experiences? Well, asking for feedback is one way to do just that. It provides precious insight into things like why you have repeat customers, why one product is more popular than another, or why you receive more enquiries through Facebook over LinkedIn, for example. It allows you to view your business through a customer’s lens which can highlight areas for improvement, as well as areas that are providing the most growth opportunities where you may wish to invest more heavily in. Customer feedback can be used to improve and grow your business while also attracting new customers.

Not every customer will give feedback, but being asked can help a customer’s perception of a brand. Any information you get will be of use and might give you the opportunity to mend a relationship before they spread the word of their bad experience to others.

The benefits of reviews

While negative reviews cannot simply be swept under the rug, that’s not to say these types of reviews are inherently bad for business. Since reviews are typically hosted on independent platforms (ensuring no information can be hidden from the public), they are incredibly candid. This is valuable to prospective customers as they gain an honest opinion from another everyday person about a product or service. Customers trust reviews so it’s up to your business to make sure your product or service is a quality offering that your customers will love.

Negative reviews offer the company a chance to respond, put things right and show they care. Everyone knows businesses aren’t perfect, but they want assurance that something will happen if things aren’t perfect.

Both feedback and reviews are incredibly important tools for current and prospective customers, and gaining them should form part of your sales or customer management process. So, how do you incorporate these into your business strategy?

How Review Tui helps customers to gain both feedback and reviews

Review software

Not sure how to go about gaining customer feedback and reviews? Don’t worry, Review Tui is your one-stop platform for gaining both at various touchpoints so you can pursue business growth and success. Without insight into what your customers like and don’t like about your products and services, there are limited opportunities to improve on friction areas. That’s why gaining customer feedback and reviews is so business-critical.

With Review Tui, you have the ability to create your own customer surveys to gather both feedback and reviews with ease. It all starts with asking the right questions and making it as easy as possible for customers to share their thoughts with you. Review Tui offers a variety of question types to make it engaging and simple to answer questions including draggable ranked responses, free-flowing text boxes, sliding indicators, checkboxes, and more. Not only can you gain customer feedback through our platform, but also track and analyse it to inform your business strategy going forward.

At the end of the day, gaining feedback and reviews boils down to making it simple and accessible for all of your customers - the lower the perceived effort, the more likely you are to gain responses. Gathering and measuring customer feedback can be one of your biggest business assets, revealing how to meet and exceed your customers’ needs and expectations so you can increase customer retention and acquisition. However, we understand that leaving feedback isn’t necessarily high on the list of priorities for many customers which is why it’s crucial to offer a quick, hassle-free option. That’s where Review Tui can help. We understand that gathering feedback should be easy for both businesses and their customers alike and that’s why our platform functions as it does! Explore our features that make the feedback process simple for everyone involved by clicking on the button below.

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