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Get customers to do the hard work...


At one stage, the "Feature Wish List" for the eCommerce web site I managed a few years ago grew until it had more than 70 lines. Most of which were Priority One. Or at least they were to the various team members who advocated them... Each month we would have a spirited discussion based on prioritising the list to the 4 or 5 we could develop and test each month based on cost, easy of implementation, guesses at future revenue, cost of not fixing etc.Later it occurred to us that we should listen to the customer. Actually that was one of the reasons why four years ago I got so excited about the Net Promoter Score, and eventually drove the development of CustomerGauge. In a short article on TMC Net, Michael Hawley summarises how to get your customers to help you prioritise your "to do" list. He outlines how to do this based on balancing all elements - customer needs, business value and technical implications. The "Customer Needs" part is driven by using the Net Promoter Score (NPS) "...to set a baseline for customer satisfaction through a key question such as “How likely is it that you would recommend the site to a friend or colleague?” In your surveys, in addition to this key question, ask other questions about the experience on your site and the potential feature additions, and correlate which features have the biggest impact on the overall satisfaction. You can then assign values to the customer need column in the feature matrix..." Michael suggests weighting this by a matrix of values: "...Adding together the customer needs, business value and technical cost of each potential feature in your matrix can reveal a clear picture of a development roadmap for your site. The features that are most important for your customers, have the biggest impact on your business and are easiest to implement will surface to the top of the list."Using CustomerGauge, this can easily be achieved by using the "Magic Grid" feature to help 1) identify your highest value customers (by spend or profit) and 2) identify your most satisfied/dissatisfied customers in that segment.

Customer Gauge Magic Grid

By reading their comments you can understand what your most loyal customers think you should add, or are telling you what is annoying them most. A simple ranking will help you to prioritise your list.

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