Receipts as Feedback Tools? 5 Reasons Why They Just Aren’t Good Enough

Recently, the feedback space got a little busier. We welcome more attention on customer feedback; we certainly think it is important. But it must be done right. Mediocre feedback solutions aren’t feedback solutions at all; they’re just annoyances for customers. Some of the newcomers to the customer feedback space are banking heavily on receipts to prompt feedback. While we believe receipts can be part of the effort to get the word out to customers, they shouldn’t be the primary channel. Receipt-centric feedback isn’t the way to go, and here’s why:

Reason #1: Receipts are going away
Many new POS platforms (like Square) allow customers to turn down getting a receipt altogether. Without a receipt, no feedback. If they do choose to get one, customers must receive an email or text receipt to easily provide feedback. Sounds good, but…

Reason #2: Nobody looks at them
A 2013 study shows that e-receipts have a 33.7% open rate, so businesses miss out entirely on almost 2/3 of consumers who actually make a purchase. Paper receipts are likely even worse. Ever studiously looked at your coffee receipt? Not likely…into the waste bin it goes.

Reason #3: Receipts are after the fact
A well-designed feedback program allows customers to communicate with the businesses before, during, and after the transaction. If a customer has a problem while shopping they should be able to get help immediately. It could actually save that potential sale.

Reason #4: Receipts are only for buyers
What about customers that are just browsing? What about those that have questions but have not yet decided? Even worse, what about the customer who had a problem and didn’t buy because of it? Businesses that only use receipts as their feedback prompt miss out on an entire segment of potential customers.

Reason #5: It’s not anonymous
Receipts are likely to be tied to a name on a credit card. Some customers are not comfortable with their personal information being tied to their feedback. For some, it’s a privacy issue. For others, they are embarrassed if the employees know they complained about them or afraid of retribution. This is especially true for your loyal regulars. For a comprehensive feedback program, give customers an anonymous option.

Receipts can be part of the strategy, but not the whole strategy. At OwnerListens, we’ve built a feedback system that can leverage custom SMS numbers, our own iOS and Android apps, web-based forms, and our newly unveiled API so developers can easily integrate our offerings into their products. And now with iBeacon support, the system is more powerful than even. Are we beyond receipts? Absolutely.

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