Feedback software helps you listen to what your customers want and decide what’s important.
However, which product feedback software should you choose? A Quora question on the topic throws up 32 suggestions and 88 answers.
So in this article I’ve taken a different approach. I’ve listed 4 common business goals and the feedback tools that will help you deliver them.
- You want to create a culture of transparency and collaboration that surfaces the best ideas
- You want to get feedback when customers are actually using your product
- You want to reach as many people as possible with a few simple questions
- You want to make the process of gathering feedback, prioritising it and creating a roadmap easier
1. You want to create a culture of transparency and collaboration that surfaces the best ideas
By creating a culture of collaboration you can gather amazing feedback from your team and customers.
If everyone knows you are open to discussing problems with your product, then they are more likely to contribute in the first place.
In collaboration cultures people understand that even though everyone gets a voice, not everyone gets to decide. People are able to air their opinions, argue passionately for how they believe things should be done, and try to negotiate compromises. But it certainly doesn’t mean that everyone has to agree with every decision.
— Rian van der Merwe, author of Making It Right: Product Management for a Startup World
If everyone can see that you’ve taken their feedback seriously, even if you haven’t decided to implement it, they are more likely to feel valued.
To create this kind of culture you need to set up an open and transparent process for gathering feedback.
TRY: Product feedback boards
Product feedback boards give you a quick and easy way to collect and qualify customer and team feedback.
Contributors can add their own suggestions, upvote suggestions they like and see what everyone else has suggested. You can also add status updates to feedback, so everyone knows what has happened to their idea.
Boards can be made public for customer feedback (like this one) or private for team or B2B feedback.
This is an example of a Feature Upvote product feedback board
TRY: Public Trello boards
You can use Trello boards to collect and vote on customer or team feedback (if contributors have a Trello account).
This is a good option if you already have a Trello culture at your company and like the visual style of the boards.
Here’s an example of a Trello feedback board.
2. You want to get feedback when customers are actually using your product
Even though product managers say that direct customer feedback is the top source of new product ideas, a startling 86% say that they don’t spend enough time talking to users.
— Alpha product management report 2019
Customers are arguably most likely to give you feedback when they are using your product. This is particularly true if they have a problem and need an answer.
In this scenario you could try feedback tools that work within your product. Just make sure that you don’t put your desire for feedback in the way of customers having a good user experience.
TRY: Customer engagement and product feedback software
Customer engagement software like Hotjar and Intercom let you engage with (and track) customers while they use your product. You can ask customers questions, show them a quick poll or invite them to take a quick survey. Chatbot software like Drift also lets you reach out to customers.
In this example, Hotjar provides the quick poll and Drift provides the chatbot.
3. You want to reach as many people as possible with a few simple questions
Sometimes, you just need to get as much feedback as possible by asking a few key questions. This way you have enough data to draw meaningful conclusions.
If this is your goal, then a simple survey could be a good choice.
Surveys and polls are a quick and simple way to get feedback from customers. You can ask customers for feedback with a feedback button or email invite.
There’s plenty of survey tools to choose from, including Typeform, SurveyPlanet and SurveyGizmo.
Best practice is to keep surveys short, which usually means writing your survey and then deleting about half the questions.
Use surveys to get answers to a few important questions
4. You want to make the process of gathering feedback, prioritising it and creating a roadmap easier
Are you tired of using multiple tools to gather feedback in one place, prioritise it and create a product roadmap?
If so, then you might want to try feedback software that does some – or all – of these jobs for you.
TRY: Product management tools
Product management tools are generally designed to help you find out what users need, to help you prioritise ideas and then to draw up a product roadmap.
This is an ambitious goal, and product management tools can feel inflexible. However, some product managers relish the idea of having so many processes under one roof.
Product management software choices include productboard, ProdPad and Aha!.
TRY: Issue and project tracking software
Project tracking software like Atlassian Jira can help you gather feedback in one place, vote on it, draw up a roadmap and deliver on that roadmap.
It’s not as ‘made for the feedback job’ as product management tools. However, if your company is already using Jira for project management and issue tracking, it can make sense to use it for feedback as well.
You can tweak Jira so it works effectively as a feedback tool. For example, you can connect Jira with a feedback board like Feature Upvote to simplify customer feedback tracking.
You can always connect Jira to a feedback tool like Feature Upvote to make it more useful
Choosing the right product feedback software
The best way to choose a product feedback tool is to work out first what you want that tool to do.
- Do you want to create a culture of collaboration?
- Do you want to target certain customers while they are using your product?
- Do you want answers to a few key questions?
- Do you want to join together various aspects of your feedback and roadmap process?
Once you’ve identified your business goal, then you can narrow down your choices.
Then test out your favourite product feedback tools and go with the one that delivers maximum value for your company.
Interested in a Feature Upvote feedback board?
Great! They are a proven way of creating a collaborative culture that surfaces the best ideas. Plus they are simple to use and integrate with your existing workflow.