Indirect Feedback

customer experience

Indirect Feedback

Indirect feedback can be just as helpful as direct feedback when it comes to understanding as much as possible about what your target audience thinks about your business. Here is an overview of what indirect feedback is, why it matters, and how to use it to improve your brand and grow your business!

What Is Indirect Customer Feedback? 

Indirect feedback includes any feedback your business receives from customers that you do not specifically ask for. Although sending recent customers surveys asking about their experience, creating social media posts that ask followers to reply with their opinion, asking customers questions in person, and other types of direct feedback can go a long way toward helping you understand what they like and dislike about your business, it can also be beneficial to gather unfiltered opinions that your customers take upon themselves to provide. 

Indirect Feedback FAQs 

Here are some of the most common questions we get about indirect feedback, how it differs from direct feedback, and why it is important for your business.

What Is the Importance of Customer Feedback? 

Businesses should always be striving to improve their customers' opinions of them, and customer feedback plays an important role in letting your team know what your customers think about your products, customer service, and business as a whole at any given time. Direct and indirect feedback can both help your business determine what your customers love about your business and would like to see improved and taking this information into consideration when contemplating potential changes to your business can help you determine what specific changes your target audience would most like to see. 

How Can Businesses Gather Indirect Feedback? 

Social media is a major source of indirect feedback. Reading through comments on your Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other social media pages will provide hundreds of opinions about what your followers think about specific products or your business as a whole. Other common options include unsolicited emails from customers, opinions shared in live chat sessions or telephone conversations with customers, and reviews of your business that customers post on social media or various review sites. 

What Are the Differences Between Direct and Indirect Feedback? 

Direct feedback occurs when your business specifically asks past customers to provide feedback about their experiences, while indirect feedback occurs when the customer is the one to make the decision to provide similar information without being asked to. Indirect feedback may be more candid and unfiltered than direct feedback because customers are more likely to express their honest opinions without thinking as clearly about the fact that your business wants this information and what you plan to do with it, which means that combining indirect feedback with direct feedback can give you the widest range of customer opinions that can be used to improve your business. 

What Are the Benefits of Addressing Indirect Feedback? 

Responding to indirect feedback can be an important step in letting your customers know that their opinions matter to you, and incorporating this information into future changes to your business can help you make your brand better align with your customer's expectations and preferences. These benefits can include: 

  • Receiving more honest and unbiased feedback than you might get through direct feedback
  • Gaining insights into customer perceptions about a wide range of aspects of your brand
  • Identifying potential issues that a large number of customers comment on
  • Building a stronger brand reputation

How Should Businesses Respond to Indirect Feedback? 

Responding to very basic comments is not always necessary, although every comment plays a role in helping you build an overall understanding of what your target audience thinks about your brand. It can be a good idea to provide professional replies to more specific questions or comments from followers or other customers that are clearly interested in a response, and all indirect feedback can be used to adjust your business to make it better align with what your customers want. 

What Are Some Examples of Indirect Feedback? 

Indirect feedback can include: 

  • Social media comments or messages
  • Emails 
  • Comments made in telephone or in-person conversations
  • Comments made in online live chats

Customer preferences

Customer feedback

Customer community

Customer database

Customer effort score

Customer engagement

Direct Feedback

Voice of the customer (VoC)

Customer feedback

Conversational feedback