Business Growth

Customer Feedback: A Guide for Tradies

We all have room to improve. The same goes for your business. Whether you’re just starting or established, feedback is a necessary part of growth.

The Importance of Feedback

Feedback is the way businesses can understand how customers view them: what they’re getting right, what isn’t so right, and where they can offer more. It’s important that your business can collect effective feedback from customers, and in this article, we’ll cover various types of feedback, where to start in making a feedback system, and how to get the most out of customer feedback to grow your business.

Types of Customer Feedback

To start, we’ll cover some of the types of customer feedback and their usefulness to your business. When your business starts to ask for customer feedback, it’s good to cover a range of types to get the best idea about how your customers feel about your work and business.


Directly In-Person

Starting with a simple one: sometimes a customer might just tell you straight up to your face what they think of your work and your business. In-person feedback can be of any variety, sometimes simple, sometimes glowing, sometimes... colourful. The most useful of in-person customer feedback is when you can fix an issue promptly, which (most) people will appreciate.

Most customers, however, will wait until they can craft a response or review after the fact.


Online Reviews

A common form of review. Online reviews are helpful to get an overall idea of customer opinions and see how your business is represented online. The reviews won’t reflect all opinions and a lot of feedback can fall through the cracks, due to the bias of these reviews. Readers will take most with a grain of salt, but this just enforces how businesses with more reviews will be much more attractive to prospective customers.

Online reviews, without prompting, are usually done by customers that consider your business a great experience or a terrible one. Ever been to a really crap café or felt ripped off by a restaurant? The first thing most want to do is go online and tell everyone to avoid wasting their money there! Or if it’s the best coffee you’ve ever had, you want to encourage everyone to try it. Same with your business reviews.

That’s not to say you shouldn’t ask for online reviews. There are many benefits to online reviews, especially as they might be the first introduction possible customers have to your business! Find out how to ask for Google reviews and how even negative reviews can turn positive for your business.


Customer Satisfaction Surveys

Satisfaction surveys are a great middle ground to get accurate information without a customer feeling overwhelmed. You’ve probably received them yourself or seen them on screens in shops: there’s one on the counter of most 7/11s with smiley faces asking for your feedback (it takes ages to fill out, though.)

With a satisfaction survey, you can get a clear picture of how your customers feel about different parts of your business. Scales from 1 – 5, smiley ratings, stars: all of these things are just various kinds of direct feedback.

These surveys provide a good overview of your customers’ experience, where your business performed well and where it fell short. They’re quick and convenient for a customer to fill out and easy to interpret. Surveys with numerical values make it easy to track where customers are happy and what parts of your business need improvement.


Feedback Forms

A great way to follow up a survey is with a feedback form. These can be integrated into a survey or be sent a as a separate form to ask for customers’ feedback, depending on what your business decides.

Feedback forms ask your customers to describe their experience/why they gave certain scores on a satisfaction survey. Feedback forms might be more daunting to customers as they require details and more time to complete, but they are worth making and offering.

Making a form an optional addition to a satisfaction survey is an excellent way to get detailed feedback from customers. Either way, you’re getting some detail, and the choice means more clients will feel be more likely to complete the feedback form.


Creating an Effective Feedback System

Now that we’ve covered some of the types of feedback, you might already be considering them for your business. So here are some tips to get you started on an effective feedback system, tailored to you and your business.


Your Improvement Goals

Before you start sending out those emails or survey requests, you’ll need to think about the kind of answers you want! Consider the aspects of your business you need customer feedback on and make your questions fit.

If you’re starting up in your business or well-established, important feedback might be the pricing of the jobs, the work you offer, customer service, ease of payment, clear invoices/quotes, etc. Avoid questions that aren’t relevant, such as about services you don’t offer.

It would be like KFC asking if you like calamari: not only will irrelevant questions muddy the waters and cause confusion, but they’ll mean more time spent sifting through responses.

Consider what’s most important to right now: for new businesses it might be gaining a customer base and learning how new customers found you, for larger businesses a possible goal might be streamlining your customer accounts and invoicing process.

Example Goals could be:

-          Reviewing payment systems/Is our payment system working well?

-          Improving Team Member Field Service

-          Managing response times to customers

-          Estimates/Quoting: are they effective/prompt? Are clients satisfied with the quotes?

-          Getting more customer leads/How did our customers find us?



When asking for customers feedback, you’ll need to consider when you’re going to ask.

Letting a customer know about your feedback system after you’ve finished a job is fine, especially if your service is in and out for short jobs. You can let clients know that with their follow-up email or text, they’ll also be able to leave feedback.

Asking when the work is still fresh in their mind can result in honest, if blunt responses, especially if a customer is dissatisfied. Requests don’t need to be immediate to be effective; giving a customer a bit of time to marinate on a response means you’ll get thoughtful replies. It’s up to you. You can do both: offer to hear it in-person or send along a form.

Requests for feedback can also be sent along with thank you messages for customers! AroFlo’s article on thank you messages covers how you can boost retention and customer satisfaction with a few straightforward steps.


Responding to Feedback

Even with clear questions, easy access and good timing, some customers aren’t going to leave feedback, especially if they have no issues with the job at completion.

This makes the feedback your business receives all the more important, especially customer responses to your feedback requests. A customer wants to know that you’ve seen what they have to say and take it on board. This is especially important for online reviews, as these are public facing. Online reviews are a form of digital word-of-mouth, a key part of business growth!

By responding to customers’ feedback, your business can foster better relationships with customers, improve your reputation and lead to all-important client retention and word-of-mouth recommendation.

There won’t always be time to go into detail with every feedback form or survey, but make sure to respond with a thanks and acknowledgement!


Making the Most of Feedback

These are all glowing reasons why you should implement a feedback system and the kind of system you can create that’s best suited for your business.

Then your system is burdened by success, customers are reviewing all over the place, and you’ve only got so much time to review feedback! You did all this work, and you want to use the results properly.

Not to worry, there are ways you can make the most of your feedback and streamline the process.


Actionable Feedback

This is the most useful kind of feedback you can get when asking for feedback from customers. Actionable feedback means any feedback that you can act on and find solutions to; feedback that points out concrete positives and negatives. They explain why a customer left the score they did.

When you’re looking at the feedback you’ve received from customers, actionable feedback should be a priority.

Say you’re running a painting business and have a few employees, and you get customer feedback that says ‘very unhappy, they dropped the heat gun on the carpet and didn’t tell us. Very unprofessional and dangerous!’ That’s the kind of feedback you can act upon, right away. Who was working, did they do that, why didn’t they inform anyone?

While basic feedback from customers can open communication between them and your business, it means more work for you to chase it up. If a customer is going to complain about your work or leave a bad review, you want to know why that happened!

Looking for concrete feedback means less time wondering and chasing up reasons from your customers, and more time spent on effective responses from your business. It saves both you and the customer time and can lead to greater customer satisfaction.



With the results of feedback, you’ll be able to review where you and your employees might need additional training to improve your business and service.

For example, field service is an often-overlooked part of the trades (and as there’s not much of an option to work from home,) you and your team will be directly interacting with customers. If your feedback reflects new issues with customer service, your business can offer additional training in response.

It really comes down to what pops up, and as with anything, things will change over time. The beauty of customers feedback is you can keep up with the changes.



The more your business grows, the more time you’ll need to dedicate to admin and customer service. Feedback from customers will grow with your base, and the last thing you want is for valuable feedback to be lost.

There are ways to automate and streamline the feedback process, from sending out surveys or updating feedback forms, or keeping track of trends in feedback.

Growing with AroFlo

We hope this overview of customer feedback has given you a better idea of why feedback is important and how you can make a system that works for you and your business.

AroFlo’s article on building customer relationships details the benefits of positive customer relations and how it can lead to a solid customer base and excellent reputation. Create a positive feedback loop: happier customers equal more customers equal more happy customers, and so on!

With AroFlo, you can save time on your customer feedback system and more effectively use customer feedback to improve and grow your business.

AroFlo offers demos and a free trial with AroFloGO: try it for business today!

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