How to Collect Feedback That Comes in via Slack
If your company runs on Slack, there is a good chance you’re regularly receiving feature requests and customer feedback from internal teams via Slack messages.
And as Slack is increasingly used to communicate with customers, you might find yourself receiving feedback directly from them via Slack messages.
Slack makes an excellent hub for collecting customer feature requests for many reasons:
No special tools means less friction and more feedback. Slack is used across teams. If a sales rep talks to a prospect and the prospect makes a feature request, it’s easy for the sales rep to shoot a Slack message like, “ACME Corp says they won’t purchase without SAML support,” and know that the product team will see it.
It lets your team discuss features. Slack is a messaging tool which means not only can you share feedback, but it’s easy to have a discussion around that feedback right in Slack. Maybe the product already has that feature, or maybe there is a workaround. Perhaps the product team needs additional clarification on what the core use case is. All of those conversations can be had right there in Slack and in context with the original feature request.
It’s low effort. Slack isn’t just great for submitting feature requests, but it’s also a great way to passively hear about what customers care about. You can subscribe to a channel and dip your toe in as you have time to stay on top of what people care about.
Problems with Slack as a feedback management tool
Unfortunately, Slack also has some drawbacks when used to collect product feedback.
Difficult to centralize from other applications
Slack doesn't have an easy way to centralize feedback from other applications.
If you get your feedback from a customer support tool like Zendesk, you’d have to copy and paste it into Slack to share the feedback.
Same thing if you get feedback via email. Or if your feature requests come in through your Salesforce CRM. Or even from feedback forms.
As a company communication tool, Slack is great. But it doesn’t have the right functionality to work as a centralized feedback portal.
You can’t easily count votes
There’s no easy way to roll up feature requests and keep track of which ones are asked for most often. This is important to know which requests are most popular… but there’s no great way to do that with Slack.
You can't filter, sort, or segment
To find the highest-impact feature requests, you may want to go beyond simply which features are most popular. You may want to figure out which are most popular among certain customer segments. For example, you may be interested in knowing:
Which features are most popular among your enterprise customers
Which features are most popular among your churned customers
Which features have been asked for most in the last two months
Which features are associated with the highest cumulative MRR
And so on.
A robust customer feedback system would be able to slice and dice your feedback to find those things out. But you can’t easily do that in Slack.
You can't quickly close the feedback loop
Closing the loop means telling a customer when you build a feature they asked for. You just reach out, explain you built the feature, and encourage them to submit more feedback in the future. It’s a simple action, but it shows you listen, which is why it’s a powerful way to build customer loyalty and reduce churn.
It’s not easy to send this kind of direct message with Slack. You would have to scroll through all the feature requests and look for contact information in the Slack message you were sent. Then you’d have to individually send an email to each client (or build a mail merge). It’s labour-intensive.
Users can’t vote for others’ feature requests
We’ve noted that there are several cons of using feedback voting boards. Still, though, they can be a useful way to give customers the option to leave feedback directly. They also allow customers to vote for the features that others have left.
The Slack app doesn’t easily accommodate this voting board style of product feedback collection.
3 Powerful ways to collect feedback that comes in via Slack
Precisely because the focus of Slack is on internal interaction between staff, there is not a lot of depth on how to accomplish some tasks, including gathering feedback on products.
Is there a way to keep the simplicity of submitting feedback via Slack while not having the process be hard to manage and having things fall through the cracks?
The key benefit we don’t want to lose in a Slack-based process is the simplicity of having different teams submit feedback via Slack to a well-known #feedback channel.
The best way: Connect Slack with a feedback management tool
The best way to collect product feedback from Slack is by using an Integration with a purpose-built feedback management tool. These are pieces of software that have been explicitly developed to centralize customer feedback and track feature requests.
Here’s how you set up this solution:
Find a feature request app that integrates with Slack. (Our favourite is—don’t gasp in surprise—Savio.)
Set up the integration for your Slack workspace. (Here’s how you do that with Savio.)
Now, when you get feedback in Slack—from an internal team member or from a customer—you can easily send it to your feedback management tool.
For example, with Savio, you simply click on “more actions” on any Slack message…
… and then push it to Savio.
You’ll have your feedback all in one place
You can set up feedback collection automations
You will be able to smoothly prioritize your feedback and find the highest-impact features
You can effortlessly close the loop and follow up with customers
You can send feedback from either public channels or private channels
- A modest monthly fee for the tool
The second best way: Copy and paste into a feedback management tool
The next best option is to use a purpose-built product feedback software tool that doesn’t integrate with Slack but can still centralize and segment your feedback.
It’s not the best option because, without an integration, it will still be pretty manual. Still, if you choose a good tool, it will help overcome a lot of the drawbacks of just using Slack. You should be better able to centralize your feedback, prioritize it, and close the loop.
Note: You would probably only really choose this option if your team already uses a feedback tool that doesn’t integrate with Slack and you love it. If you don’t yet have a feedback tool, it probably makes sense to simply choose one that can integrate directly with Slack.
1. You would copy the Slack message. You would also copy the name of the customer if your team member provided it.
2. Then, you would paste it into your feedback tool.
This option isn’t ideal, but it still offers some advantages.
You’ll have your feedback all in one place
You will be able to prioritize your feedback and find the highest-impact features
You can close the loop
It’s manual and time-consuming to copy and paste and may introduce errors
A modest monthly fee for the tool you choose
The third best way: Create a dedicated feedback channel in Slack
The least effective way is also the easiest: create a dedicated #feedback channel. Creating a Slack channel helps you concentrate all conversations and updates in one place.
Then you socialize that specific channel with all of the various internal team slack users that want to communicate feature requests to the product team.
For example, when sales or support hear feedback from customers or prospects, they shoot a message to the #feedback channel in Slack. The product team monitors the #feedback channel and can set up notifications. If clarification is required, the discussion happens right there in Slack.
The pros of this method are that:
You don’t need another tool
Everyone can see all the feedback
The cons are:
It’s difficult to centralize feedback in Slack from other sources
It’s very manual, taking up time
You can’t easily count how many people asked for a feature
You can’t slice and dice your data
You can’t easily close the loop
Slack isn’t the best way to track customer feedback or feature requests
Slack is a fantastic tool for internal communication and other workflows. We love how fast it is and how it can reduce emails.
But it’s not the best system for feedback management.
If you’re looking for a better tool for user feedback, check out the features Savio can offer. We’ve designed it based on conversations with hundreds of product leaders from companies like Google, Drift, and even Slack.
Note: Savio helps B2B SaaS Customer Success, Product, and Sales teams organize and prioritize product feedback and feature requests. Learn more about Savio here.
It’s the best way for SaaS companies to centralize feedback and figure out what to build next. Try it for free.
Kareem is a co-founder at Savio. He's been prioritizing customer feedback professionally since 2001. He likes tea and tea snacks, and dislikes refraining from eating lots of tea snacks.
Make product plans with evidence, not anecdote
Centralize product feedback, enrich and prioritize it with customer data, and create evidence-based roadmaps.
For B2B SaaS Product and Success teams.