Those who have run a small business, or been involved in the accounting for one, understand inherently the value of receipts. Receipts become those valuable little source documents for claiming deductions on taxes, which in turn can help bring some vital cash flow back into the business itself, especially for those who pay on a quarterly basis. But beyond that, receipts haven't had much value for anyone else, at least, until Square brought out its new tool known as Feedback to make receipts not just source documents, but a measure of performance for the business.
Feedback gives customers a prompt, connected to the receipt itself, to leave comment about the goods and / or services purchased with Square, giving users a chance to talk about experiences with the organization or seller in question. The seller in turn gets access to this commentary from the Square Dashboard, and from there can offer further follow-up in a bid to better help satisfy the customer. Square in turn, according to seller product lead Gokul Rajaram, hopes that the use of the Feedback system will give sellers an extra measure of customer service capability.
Square, meanwhile, is taking its own lessons to heart, augmenting its customer service capabilities with a newly-opened office in Kitchener-Waterloo in Ontario, Canada. It's the first dedicated Canadian office for Square, having previously gotten by with a co-working space that accommodated just a few employees. Now the company can bring in over 30 to the Canadian office, stepping up service in that country.
It's never a bad idea to augment customer service; it has a way of helping spur further sales and business development with repeat customers. Small businesses commonly understand the value of repeat business, and keeping old customers happy and buying is more cost-effective overall than trying to bring in new paying customers. There's a bit of a down side involved in this approach, though, as it depends on users to actually file the reports through the receipts. There's not much of an incentive for customers to do that, unless of course something went very wrong during the proceedings. So if the businesses planning to use Square Feedback want to get the most out of it, said businesses may want to consider adding on some kind of incentive plan to get the users interested. It doesn't necessarily have to be anything big; a drawing for a random item, a discount on future purchases, anything like that might do well for something like this. The key point is that, since it depends on the user to file the feedback, pairing incentives with such a measure is likely to produce more feedback in general. More feedback—especially more good feedback—means a better overall rating, and potentially may even tip the scales for a few users to buy from a particular operation. That's a benefit to the business both in terms of perception and actual response. It's even more important for mobile commerce, as the variety of shops available from one device mean that being the best experience out there keeps users less likely to stray, despite the enhanced ease of doing just that.
Improved customer service should be a goal for just about any business out there. Keeping the current customer happy is a far better alternative than trying to find new customers, and Square's involvement in that process should draw more businesses to do business with Square than before.
Edited by Maurice Nagle
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