How to Create a Feedback Loop: Step-By-Step Guide With Best Practices

How to Create a Feedback Loop: Step-By-Step Guide With Best Practices cover

If you’re wondering how to create a feedback loop in your product, you’re in the right place!

In this article, we look at the process of creating feedback loops step-by-step and share some best practices for product managers to get the best out of user feedback.

Let’s get right to it!


What is a customer feedback loop?

A feedback loop is a sequence of actions involving collecting customer feedback, analyzing it, and acting on it to improve the product and increase customer satisfaction in a continuous way.

There are both positive and negative feedback loops and both types are valuable for your organization.

A negative feedback loop is about identifying those areas where your product or user experience may be lacking.

A positive feedback loop focuses on verifying where you’re doing well so that you can carry on with the good work and replicate the experiences for other user groups in a structured way.

How to Speed Up Feedback Loops by Peep Laja.

The 5-step process for creating customer feedback loops

Feedback loops consist of 5 main stages:

  1. Collect feedback
  2. Analyze it
  3. Acknowledge the feedback
  4. Act on the insights
  5. Follow up with your users
Customer Feedback Loop
Customer Feedback Loop.

Gathering feedback

There are a number of techniques you can use to gather customer feedback at various touchpoints in the customer journey:

Analyze customer feedback responses

Once you collect customer feedback, it’s time to analyze it.

Quantitative feedback is great for identifying trends and patterns, and it’s fairly easy to carry out.

Analyzing qualitative feedback, on the other hand, is more challenging and time-consuming, especially if you don’t have appropriate tools that allow you to tag responses.

However, it’s essential to understand why users behave in particular ways and pick up issues they may be facing.

Acknowledge feedback with automated messages to customers

Whether you use user inputs or not, always acknowledge their feedback to show them that you’re listening to their opinions and are ready to consider them.

This part takes very little effort. If you’re collecting feedback via in-app surveys, you can easily trigger an in-app message with a quick thank-you note or use a webhook to send them an email.

Prioritise feedback to improve products

At this stage, you implement the findings from your research for the benefit of the product. That’s kind of a no-brainer. After all, collecting and analyzing feedback only makes sense if you act on it.

Of course, you can’t implement all the findings at once, so it’s key to prioritize them based on the impact they make.

Close the feedback loop by following up with customers

When you introduce changes to the product, you need to let your customers know about it. You can do this via:

Apart from driving engagement and adoption, this stage is important to show your users that you value their feedback and act on it to improve their experience. This strengthens the relationship with customers and boosts their loyalty.

Best practices for creating successful customer feedback loops

How do you actually create successful feedback loops? Let’s check out a few best practices.

Segment users before collecting feedback

Segmenting your users before you collect any feedback allows you to draw more meaningful conclusions once you have the data.

You are better to target your users with relevant surveys in the first place.

For example, if you’re collecting feedback on improvements to a feature, targeting your power users will be a sensible thing to do. If, on the other hand, you’ve launched a new feature, target those users that need it to achieve their goals.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: segment the users
Segment users easily with Userpilot. Book the demo now.

Use both active and passive feedback methods

For best results, collect feedback both actively and passively. How does it work?

Active feedback

Active feedback is when you trigger surveys for your users to solicit their ideas on the product.

This can include regular NPS, CSAT, or PMF surveys to track trends.

This is not limited to quantitative data though. You can easily add qualitative follow-up questions where users have a chance to explain in more depth how they feel about the product and share ideas on how to improve it or the issues they face. Just like Slack has done in the in-app survey below.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: gather feedback actively with surveys
Active feedback example from Slack.

Passive feedback

No matter how loyal your users are and how much they want to help, there are times they can’t respond to the survey when it pops on the screen.

That’s why you need to collect passive feedback as well. You do it by adding a feedback widget to your resource center (like Userpilot has done) or in an easily visible part in the UI. In this way, you enable your users to submit feedback at a time that is good for them.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: collect passive feedback as well
Passive feedback widget in Userpilot.

Trigger contextual in-app surveys

Contextual in-app surveys appear when the user completes a specific action that you’re collecting feedback on.

This could be when the user engages with a new feature and completes an event for the very first time.

They are great at capturing user impressions because they are triggered when the experience is still fresh in users’ minds. This makes feedback more reliable and increases the chance that the user responds in the first place.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: trigger contextual in-app surveys. Source: Jira
Contextual in-app survey from Jira.

Use a product analytics tool to analyze feedback

Analyzing quantitative feedback is pretty straightforward and analytics tools can help you track your NPS or CSAT scores with no effort.

One of the first things you want to do is segment your users based on the responses they give.

Next, cross-reference the results with product usage data to identify patterns in each segment’s behavior. How are your promoters different from your detractors? This can help you identify friction as well as successful behaviors.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: analyze the results
NPS quantitative analysis in Userpilot.

The analysis is not so straightforward when it comes to qualitative feedback.

For starters, not all tools enable you to tag and analyze qualitative responses (Userpilot does, though). If you’re lucky to have one, tagging user responses allows you to categorize and quantify them.

Consequently, you’re able to assess the scale of the issues you have to deal with and prioritize them better.

At this stage, you need to dig deeper and either use behavioral data or reach out to your users to understand the true nature of the problems they flag. For example, you may be able to find out that issues that appear to be caused by missing features are in fact a result of inadequate onboarding.

NPS qualitative response tagging in Userpilot
NPS qualitative response tagging in Userpilot.

Prioritize customer feedback based on their importance

Before you act on the user feedback, make sure you prioritize it.

First, make sure the problem you’re trying to solve is aligned with your product vision. You can’t solve all the problems in the world. If you try that, you’ll build a mediocre product in the best case. In the worst-case scenario, it may lead to a massive waste of resources and your product failure.

Don’t dismiss such problems entirely though, as there may come a time when they become relevant. Simply put them at the bottom of the backlog.

When it comes to the top of the backlog, use a prioritization technique of your choice to pick the most urgent issues. Two popular techniques used by product teams are:

  • Cost of Delay – team members assess how much it costs to delay acting on the problem
  • Prioritization poker – they assign a numerical value to each problem anonymously using cards and later justify their positions

Use in-app messages to announce changes

In-app messages are an effective way to announce an update or new feature.

They are easy to design and you can create a sequence of them to make sure users know about the changes you’ve made.

That’s what Userpilot did when they first introduced the webhooks feature. They first announced it with a banner. Clicking on it would take you to the Integrations page where a tooltip showed you where it was on the page and gave you information on how to start using it.

For bigger changes or new features, adding an interactive walkthrough might be a good idea as well. This will increase the chances of users adopting the feature.

How to Create a Feedback Loop: announce the changes
Announce product changes to close the feedback loop.

A quick disclaimer here. While in-app messages are great at keeping active users in the loop, they are useless at communicating with churned users.

If your users leave because they’re not happy about something, make sure to let them know by email once you rectify the issue. You never know, you may be able to win them back.

How Userpilot can help you create feedback loops?

Userpilot is a product adoption platform that enables you to collect and analyze user feedback and communicate with your users in-app to effectively close your feedback loops.

Create in-app surveys to gather feedback

Creating in-app surveys is very easy using the Userpilot builder.

It allows you to customize not only the questions but also the look of the survey so that they fit seamlessly into your product UI.

It goes without saying that you can use them to run both quantitative and qualitative user surveys.

Customize your in-app surveys
Customize your in-app surveys.

Trigger responses based on survey answers

Userpilot allows you to trigger messages based on user responses.

This is possible thanks to advanced segmentation features.

For example, you can trigger different custom messages in response to different NPS survey answers. Promoters could be getting different replies from passives and the message for detractors could include an invite to an interview if their response contains no qualitative answer.

Userpilot segmentation to trigger messages acknowledging customer feedback
Userpilot segmentation to trigger messages acknowledging customer feedback.

Create in-app messages to close the feedback loop

With Userpilot, you can target your users with custom in-app messages to close the feedback loop.

The key UX patterns that are available are modals, slideouts, banners, and tooltips. You can trigger them contextually and for specific user segments.

On top of these, you can also create checklists and interactive walkthroughs that will help you improve not only the new feature discovery but also their adoption.

UI patterns in Userpilot to close the feedback loop
UI patterns in Userpilot to close the feedback loop.


While most SaaS companies realize the importance of collecting and acting on customer feedback, not all of them remember to close the feedback loop.

However, this part is essential because it communicates to the customer that you appreciate their views and care about their satisfaction.

If you’d like to see how Userpilot can help you create your own feedback loops, book the demo!

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