Stop being lazy with ad-hoc feedback.

User feedback and testing probably isn’t a high priority for you when working on your new landing page or web application. But it’s something you should take into consideration before heading in the wrong direction with your newly launched landing page.

Collecting & managing feedback or user complaints on website issues doesn’t always require the use of a large bug tracking or feedback system. For many (especially) small- and medium-sized companies, on-site feedback widgets are sufficient.

So stop being lazy with ad-hoc feedback from colleagues and customers.

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Why on-site feedback widgets?

The short answer: Because on-site feedback widgets offer the lowest barrier to start a conversation with your website visitors.

Naturally, your first priority is to find out why your incoming flow of users just won’t use your site as anticipated, or why they just aren’t converting.

Well – make them tell you.

When users are not satisfied with your website or your offers, chances are high that they’ll bounce and won’t come back. That means, you only got one real shot. In order to get your users to tell about their complaints and experienced issues, you need to keep the barriers for feedback as low as possible.

You cannot expect unsatisfied customers to go through all the trouble of finding the contact form, waiting for the page to reload, orienting themselves on the new page, filling out fields, etc. I think you get the idea.

So why not offer them an easy alternative like an on-site widget for easy ad-hoc bug reporting?

A/B Testing might sound nice during the development process but getting a glimpse inside the user’s’ mind provides you with another depth of information.

Beta testing vs. user feedback

In more traditional areas of software development, it is common to perform beta-tests, release pre-final versions of a software to a limited group of users and let them test it for you before you release your final bug-fixed version.

beta testing workflow
In modern web development workflows, this approach of beta testing seems to be a bit misplaced, since it interferes with the development speed that most agile development teams pursue.

Beta tests are also a matter of resources as they require proper planning, selecting of participants, etc. On the other hand, implementing an on-site feedback widget after releasing the first version of the website can be a quick win to collect feedback at basically no cost.

user feedback workflow


Transparency FTW: Public prototyping.

Some companies and people even try to bring the ad-hoc feedback workflow to the next level and push the envelope when it comes to testing new websites and applications.

The concept of ‘building in public’ is gaining more and more traction nowadays and a lot of tech startups are opening up their feedback cycle to the public.

Product Hunt is a great pioneer when it comes to ‘building in public’. Ryan Hoover, founder and CEO of Product Hunt, wrote this great piece on why companies should shift their mindsets towards public prototyping and building products in great transparency.

Or as he personally states:

I’ve found tremendous value in feedback from the Product Hunt community and the positive influence sharing its story in public, has had in building community.

Allowing your target group to become participants instead of just being voiceless observers will be a priceless development asset for future improvements.

On-site feedback tools for your website

The great thing about on-site feedback tools is that they can be implemented on your website as easily as a Google Analytics. However, choosing among the great variety of tools isn’t always that easy since your needs and features usually vary.

Usersnap for ad-hoc feedback

It might sound a bit obvious highlighting our very own tool here, but Usersnap is very widely used as a great ad-hoc feedback tool for collecting feedback, or as Eric Elliott states:

So, the cool thing about Usersnap is that your website visitors can not only leave comments, but can create annotated screenshots (which are then automatically sent to you). With the Usersnap feedback widget embedded on your (new) website or prototype, your users can leave feedback.  

Usersnap is very straight-forward and easy-to use for collecting feedback on your website. There’s a 15-day free trial which includes all features at no cost and no strings attached. Just give it a try.

ad-hoc feedback widget from usersnap

Intercom for customer support?

If you’re already using customer support tools such as Intercom, I’d definitely recommend to give them a try. They might not only come in useful inside your app, but on your landing pages as well.

Intercom, for example, offers a great on-site chat widget which allows website visitors to ask questions and get in touch with your customer support team.

intercom feedback widget

Feedbackify’s feedback form.

Feedbackify is yet another easy-to-install feedback form for your website. It enables you to set up a feedback form for rating certain landing pages and lets website visitors add comments, suggestions or compliments.

feedbackify feedback widget

Qualaroo – targeted questions

With Qualaroo, you can set up surveys and questions for your website visitors and users and ask specific questions such as “What’s your profession?”.

With a little bit of time and customizing, the feedback options of Qualaroo will ask the right user the right question at the right time of his visit.

qualaroo feedback survey

Wrapping it up.

These are just a few of the tools out there and they are all worth a look. Not only will on-site feedback widgets increase the quantity of feedback you receive, but it will also provide you with some completely new insights to your target audience’s behaviour.

Understanding your website visitors and users is a must-have in order to work on the right things. So think twice the next time you release something without asking your website visitors.

This article was brought to you by Usersnap – a visual bug tracking and screenshot tool for every web project.

manage web projects - usersnap

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