Do you really need a website feedback tool?

10 May 2018

Heads Up Before August 2018 Saber was known as "BugMuncher", so you'll see the name BugMuncher instead of Saber throughout these older posts. You can read more about the name change here - BugMuncher rebrands to Saber.

Do you really need a website feedback tool? This may come as a surprise considering this is the blog of BugMuncher, a website feedback tool, but the answer is not always yes.

Back when I first launched BugMuncher in 2011, website feedback tools weren’t all that common, and BugMuncher was the only one offering a screenshot functionality. Today, seven years later, things have really changed. There’s a plethora of website feedback tools available, and a most big websites now have the eponymous “Feedback” button attached to the side of their page.

So it makes sense that when people are seeing these feedback buttons on popular websites, they assume their site should have one too. The thing is, just having a feedback button doesn’t mean your users will use it, and if your feedback tool isn’t being used, then you don’t need it.

Traffic

There are many ways in which you can get more use out of a feedback tool, but traffic is the ultimate decider in how much use a website feedback tool receives. In short: more traffic means more feedback. A large website that receives millions of visitors each month is also likely to receive a decent amount of feedback, where as a small, low traffic site may receive none at all.

Using data from the BugMuncher website feedback tool, the median ratio between impressions and user feedback submissions is One feedback submission for every 2,961 impressions.

Please Note: BugMuncher does not track users, it simply increments a counter every time a feedback button is loaded on a website (an impression) and there is no way of tying impressions to unique users. This is by design, as there’s no need for BugMuncher to track users, and I believe doing so would be a violation of user privacy. The downside to this is all the figures in this post are based on impressions rather than unique users or sessions.

Of course it’s not that simple, as the ratio of website traffic to amount of feedback tool use is greatly affected by the type of website on which the feedback button is installed:

Types of Website

There are three main categories of website that affect the ratio of website traffic to feedback received: In Development, Web Apps and Websites.

In Development

In Development refers to sites that are not yet live, and the website feedback tool is used internally by a team to communicate about the development of a site or web app. Predictably, this is the use case that has the best ratio of impressions to feedback, as visitors are on the site specifically to test it out and give feedback.

Based on BugMuncher’s data, sites in development receive a median of one feedback submission for every 589 impressions.

Of course, this is the one case where traffic isn’t really a factor, and on-page website feedback tools are a great way to communicate within a team while developing a website or app.

Web Apps

Web Apps refers to situations where a feedback button is used to get feedback and bug reports from customers that are logged into a control panel. Feedback tools in these types of situations have a median of One feedback submission for every 2,825 impressions.

If your web app receives over 15,000 hits a month, you’ll probably see a good return on investment from a website feedback tool.

Websites

Websites refers to any setup where the majority of viewers are not logged in or registered customers, eg: News sites, blogs, classified listings and shops. These types of sites have by far the worst ratio of impressions to feedback, at one feedback submission for every 28,886 impressions

This makes sense, as when users are not registered customers, logged into a service, they are less invested, and therefore less likely to use a feedback tool. Sites that receive over 150,000 impressions a month would most likely benefit from a feedback tool.

So, do you need a website feedback tool?

The traffic numbers above are after all just a rough guide, but if your site’s traffic numbers are well below those listed above, a website feedback tool is unlikely to be a good investment at this stage. For example you have a blog that currently receives 10,000 hits a month, a feedback button would likely get little to no use. Having said that, most feedback tools offer a free trial, so it’s always worth giving one a try if you think it might benefit you.

I hope you found this post useful. And if you’re still looking for a website feedback tool, be sure to checkout BugMuncher.

- Matt


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Saber - Quick and Easy Website Feedback