What is closed loop feedback?

Have you ever filled out a survey after a purchase? If you have, try to recall the last time someone from that company reached out after you provided feedback. Any luck? If you're having a hard time recalling a follow-up, you're not alone.

Too often, surveys are sent out, customers take valuable time in providing their sincere and honest feedback, and then– nothing. Would you ever respond to that company's survey again? Probably not.

This situation doesn't happen with NPS. Within all stellar NPS programs, companies and their team “close the loop”.

What does closing the loop mean?

In the most simple definition, “closing the loop” can be thought of as responding to customer feedback. However, there is so much more that contributes to a successful closed loop practice.

To better understand, let’s consider each step of the loop:

  • Customer has an experience with your company
  • Customer is surveyed and provides feedback
  • Your company follows up to learn more and resolve their concerns
  • Feedback is shared with the rest of the organization
  • Improvements and changes are made to the core experience based on feedback
  • Customer has a new experience with your company
  • And on and on!
As you can see from the process described above, closing the loop means so much more than simply following up with customers. As you begin those conversations, you'll mobilize your team to take immediate action to resolve concerns, share feedback with the wider team for systemic improvements, and generally improve the customer experience moving forward.

What's an example of closed loop feedback?

Consider you just purchased a new shirt from your favorite online store. The fit is perfect, design is great, and fabric is soft and comfy. Everything seems to be flawless.

However, after the first wash, a few buttons popped off the shirt. Not a huge deal, easy enough to put back on, but it’s still an unexpected hassle.

You then get a Delighted survey 1 month after your initial purchase. You provide a score of 7, as well as a few comments about how you love the shirt, but the button situation was a bit disappointing.

Within 24 hours, you're contacted by a service rep, who apologizes for the issue and offers to send over a replacement, free of charge, as well as a giftcard for your next purchase.

Imagine that experience. Your feedback wasn't lost in a blackhole, but was immediately addressed and resolved by the company. Your feedback was valued and led to quick, concrete action. This is the closed loop process in practice, and that is what sets NPS apart from other survey methods.

Now that we’ve defined the closed loop process, lets dig more into what key results you can expect from making closed loop feedback an integral part of your NPS program.

Next section: What is the importance of closing the loop?

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