What is Voice of the Customer?

Voice of the Customer is a commonly heard phrase in many businesses.  You may be wondering, what is it?  Voice of the Customer refers to feedback provided by customers and that feedback can come through a variety of channels including inbound and outbound ones.

Inbound feedback is typically feedback that comes when a customer proactively contacts a company.  Think contact center calls, emails or chats for example.  The customer is reaching out and telling you about your products and/or processes.  This feedback is typically free form voice recordings or text documents.

Outbound feedback is feedback that the customer has provided in response to defined queries.  An example would be a market research survey.  The questions are set by the company and the feedback is structured.

Some people even consider behavioral data to be part of Voice of the Customer data.  If you stop using your online banking account or no longer shop at a favorite store, you are providing valuable feedback even though you haven’t directly told the bank or the retailer how you feel.  I read somewhere that for every 1 customer who complains, there are 26 who do not complain.  They simply leave without saying a word.

Voice of the Customer data is important because it provides valuable insight.  By knowing what your customers are saying, you can identify problems with your products, processes or customer experience as well as product enhancements and other innovations.  In addition, you can use this information to rebuild customer trust and retain customers.