The Ins and Outs You Need to Know on Using In-App Feedback to Grow Your Mobile App

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Photo via Pixabay

Apps are a popular option for many businesses to provide interaction and value to their customers. Building effective apps is no easy feat, however, and monitoring and improving app performance is an ongoing process.

With so much competition, it’s important to analyze how well you can match your customers’ expectations for the app with their actual experience. Fortunately, gaining some in-app feedback can provide you with incredible insights to create a better app and differentiate yourself from competitors.

Why Does In-App Feedback Matter?

It’s not enough to build an app, get it discovered in the app store, and get it downloaded. Users install and uninstall apps in seconds, making it difficult for brands to have good app engagement and retention.

Customer churn and user satisfaction may be a challenge to achieve, but feedback gives you excellent guidance for where to start. In-app feedback can help you solve problems users are having, identify features to add or improve, and create a better user experience. In-app feedback also helps you find the bugs that can cause your app to crash, minimizing reports from users.

If you check out in-app feedback regularly, you can deliver the smoothest possible user experience to foster brand loyalty and satisfaction.

Here are the top benefits of in-app feedback:

Better Customer Connection

In-app feedback helps you interact with your customers. Understanding the user’s needs relies on feedback. When you interact with your customers, you can learn more about their needs, their problems, and their perspectives. Once you know that, you can build products or product features that deliver for them.

It’s important to interact with users during the onboarding process to improve retention, Time to Value, and discourage abandonment. Many apps are deleted shortly after the first use, so the onboarding process is incredibly important for getting someone to use the app. Think of your onboarding process as a tutorial on how to get the most out of the app – what would you want to see?

Onboarding also gives developers valuable data to improve the experience. Developers can see which areas of the app give users difficulty and improve them for better performance.

For example, a user may stop the onboarding process in the middle. You can ask why, and maybe it’s because they’re running into field problems or the app crashes at the same point, which you can fix. For those that complete onboarding, you can ask for a rating of the overall experience.

Improved App Performance

Consistency is vital to a positive user experience. If you receive regular feedback, you can deliver consistent updates that show you care about the app’s performance and their experience using it. You can implement a changelog to keep your users updated about your app’s latest changes and new features. Consider your app a work in progress, always.

Depending on your schedule for updates and receiving feedback, you can set up meetings with your team to let them know what the users are thinking and their complaints or suggestions. Like seeking feedback, your meetings should take place regularly.

Create a Roadmap

Sometimes, companies and developers get so into the product development process that they move forward without considering the user. They may create features on their own, release a bunch of features in one update, or allow too much time to pass between updates. Worse yet, developers may create more and more features without addressing existing bugs that frustrate users.

One of the best ways to keep users engaged is with communication about future features in the work and ongoing updates. When you make your roadmap public, you have an outline for your upcoming developments that users know. They can offer feedback as you go, which may impact your development process.

Users love transparency, and involving them in the development process gives them a voice and makes them feel valued. You’ll not only deliver for them, but you’ll build better products that can captivate a larger audience in the future.

Performance Monitoring

Performance is essential to a good app experience and future growth. You must monitor your app’s performance on a consistent, ongoing basis to see what’s going wrong and resolve it quickly.

Short cycles of in-app customer feedback and improvement keep your app’s performance at its peak, giving you an opportunity to make necessary changes and address user experience issues. After collecting feedback to analyze, prioritize, and refine, you can build features your customers want and come back for. Better yet, a product that encourages users to share their positive experiences and recommend your app to others.

How to Gather In-App Feedback

Apps have many ways of capturing user feedback. If possible, use all that is available to you to get sufficient feedback. Here are the most common methods:

Customer Feedback Widgets

Customer feedback widgets are a frequently used feedback method in both apps and websites. Feedback widgets are embedded within the app and allow users to click on an icon or link to share open-ended feedback about specific aspects of the product. They can also share feature requests and ideas they had while using the app.

In-App Surveys

Customer surveys are a valuable tool for receiving feedback. Email surveys have low response rates, however.

Interestingly, when you put those same surveys in an app, it makes the response more convenient for the user to respond. Keep your surveys short and sweet, and you’ll receive some excellent feedback from your users about the aspects of the app you want to know. You might want to consider asking for a survey after the user has finished a task that provides great value, such as after an exam, or after reading a guide.

Another benefit of in-app surveys is that they can help you identify the users that you want more information about. If you’re planning to conduct a series of interviews with specific customers in your audience, you may be able to find them using surveys. It’s a pre-screening, so you can select the best customers for relevant feedback.

In-App NPS Surveys

The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a vital metric for measuring user satisfaction. NPS surveys in apps get higher response rates than other methods and may provide a better read on user sentiment.

NPS is the type of survey that asks questions like “on a scale of 1 to 10, how likely are you to recommend this product?” These are easy to complete and give you great insights into the sentiment. Be sure to leave some opportunities for open-ended feedback to get deeper insights.

Shake-to-Send Feedback

One of the more innovative options, shake-to-send feedback is exactly how it sounds – users shake their phone to trigger feedback options. This is intended to be more convenient and subtle, allowing users to leave feedback when they choose without navigating away from whatever they were doing.

For example, an app like our Zutobi driver’s ed app offers practice tests for drivers according to states. If a driver in California was taking a practice test and a suggestion for how to make the test more helpful popped up, they could just shake their phone and return to the test when they’re finished. Otherwise, they may wait and forget the idea after the test.

Rate My App

Mobile apps often use the rating mechanisms on the app store platforms. This usually triggers a prompt asking the customer to provide a rating for the app, which is great for prospective users. They leave a rating in the app store, which future users can see and use to decide if they want to download the app as well.

Of course, this is more beneficial if your reviews are good, which leads to more downloads, and hopefully, more good reviews. You also have an opportunity, with permission, to add feedback to your website for more social proof, as we did for the driver’s ed app.

If not, you still have the feedback to correct the bug or problem and address it in the reviews.

Get Better Insights into Your App Performance

In-app feedback gives your users an opportunity to share suggestions, complaints, and performance details about your app. When you’re assessing the usability or functionality of your app, having these in-depth insights can inform your development process and help you create a better product for future growth. 

Author: Tim Waldenback
Tim Waldenback is the co-founder of Zutobi Drivers Ed, a gamified e-learning platform focused on online drivers education to help teens get their licenses. Tim founded Zutobi to make world-class driver’s education fun, affordable and easily accessible for all.