Square’s New Feedback Feature Can Help You Catch Bad Reviews Before They Happen

October 05, 2014

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(Facebook credit) Square’s New Feedback Feature Can Help You Catch Bad Reviews Before They Happen

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For millions of businesses across the U.S., Square has been a game-changer by providing an easy-to-implement point-of-sale solution that is affordable to any business, regardless of size. Square has competitive transactional fees and pushes payments to business owners faster than any other card-processing service.

Each month, Square issues over 10 million receipts via E-mail, creating a unique opportunity to engage with customers at a personal level and with significant ease. While we generally associate Square with small businesses, it is also in use by companies such as Uniqlo, Whole Foods, Blue Bottle Coffee, and Starbucks.

Recently, Square announced the launch of a feature that promises to truly add value to the e-mail-receipt function. Last year, Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Square, said that e-mailed receipts had the potential of becoming the next big publishing medium by giving businesses the opportunity to interact with customers and provide additional value.

The feedback feature, available to all businesses, sets the stage for an incredible revolution regarding the way customers get to interact with businesses. It will equip businesses with a unique opportunity to reach out to 100 percent of their customers by not only securing their opinions but also empowering them to voice issues or concerns immediately after the transaction has been completed. This benefit can facilitate expedient resolutions before the issues escalate into something bigger.

How Does the Service Work?

The Square feedback feature is available to all merchants using Square, regardless of size or number of transactions. The feedback feature has a simple binary path that challenges the customer by inquiring about the quality of the experience with the question: “How was your experience?”

Only two options to answer are available: a happy face and a sad face. Once the customer makes his or her selection, he or she is given the option to provide additional details in free-text form, and the option to rank the business on five metrics as follows:

Wait time, quality, customer service, environment, and other. The customer has two scales ranking from zero to five, one in a negative range and one in a positive range.  For each metric, the customer will have the opportunity to expand on details, and the merchant will have the option to respond to each free-text entry. The first interaction between customer and merchant becomes a thread that remains open until the merchant opts to mark it as resolved.

Is the Square Feedback Feature Free?

No, to activate the feedback feature and dashboard, merchants need to pay a monthly flat fee of $10, regardless of the number of transactions issuing a digital receipt. There is, however, a free trial that might prove useful to assess if the tool is a good fit for a business unit. If the feature protects your business from just one negative review every year, then it has more than paid for itself.

Does Your Business Need to Have the Square Feedback Feature?

There are several considerations before deciding if the feature is a good value for your business. A few questions worth asking before moving forward:

1. Do I have other sources to obtain customer feedback that are currently working effectively?

2. Do I issue sufficient Square-based transactions to reflect a good-sized sample of my business?

3. Am I excluding the majority of my customers, given the bulk of my transactions are cash?

4. Presently, does my business need immediate feedback to correct issues related to customer experience?

These questions will help you better weigh the value of this feature for your business.

The Square Feedback Feature Can Help Your Online Reputation

Assuming you decide to move forward with implementing this feature, and a large number of your customers transact with your business using credit or debit, there are important aspects of your online and offline business reputation that can significantly benefit from this implementation.

The most important benefit is the ability to capture customers’ issues before they feel the need to voice their opinions in forums available to a wider audience, such as Yelp, Foursquare, TripAdvisor, Facebook Reviews, and other websites frequented by consumers to rant about negative experiences. Because of the binary nature of the first phase of the feedback path, you will immediately know if there are issues that need to be tackled.

Check out How Well-Handled Negative Feedback Can Actually Improve Your Business Reputation.

Keep in mind, however, that the tool is only as good as your company’s discipline in using it expediently and providing each of your customers quick remedy when escalations arise. Similar to review management, businesses need to take ownership of the process and handle each escalation in a way that promotes a culture of loyalty and seeks to resolve issues and improve processes based on prior feedback.

The Square Feedback feature has significant potential to help small businesses improve their online business reputation by fixing issues quickly and conveying a commitment to excellence in customer care through their expedient customer engagement. Consider adding this tool to your overall reputation and review management and monitoring strategy.

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