In-App Feedback: How to Get It and What to Do With It

15 min read
Frank L.
Frank L.
Published October 12, 2023 Updated March 28, 2024

But, given users' decreasing attention spans, varying needs, and busy schedules, eliciting meaningful app feedback from your users becomes a tall order. So, how can you make it easier for users to share their experiences? What tools can you use to collect and analyze feedback? Read on to learn more.

In this article, we'll explain in-app feedback: What it is, the types you can collect, and best practices to follow to collect meaningful insights. We'll also share the best in-app feedback tools, covering their features, pros and cons, and pricing to help you make a decision.

What Is In-App Feedback? 

In-app feedback is a method of collecting user insights directly within an application. It eliminates any extra steps users may have to take to provide feedback.

For instance, by collecting feedback in your app, you eliminate user workflows, such as finding a feedback option, clicking an external link, and being redirected to a different web page without disrupting the user experience.

Retention rates for mobile apps nosedive to about 22% after just the first day:

If your mobile app fails to meet your users' expectations, most will simply close and delete the app. But did users drop off because they encountered a problem? Or because they didn't know how a particular feature worked?

In-app feedback can answer these questions and eliminate any guesswork. It can also provide valuable insights on user preferences, identify issues as they occur, and uncover ideas for new features --- all of which you can use to deliver better product experiences.

What Are the Different Types of In-App Feedback?

There are various types of in-app feedback mechanisms.

Here are six ways you can collect customer feedback.

1. In-app popups

These are small dialog boxes that appear when a particular user event is triggered. When implemented well, in-app popups receive more engagement than email and SMS survey links. But poorly implemented popups can lower app ratings, slow down loading times, and contribute to negative reviews.

2. App-rating survey 

This targeted survey gets you contextual information about the overall app's performance. Typically, users are asked to rate the app from one (least favorable) to five (most favorable) stars.

Here's an example of a survey that asks users to rate their experience:

(Image Source)

App-rating surveys offer a simple way to gauge overall user satisfaction, but they don't provide detailed feedback. Users may leave one-star ratings without explaining why.

3. NPS survey

NPS surveys help you understand who your loyal customers are. It asks users how likely they are to recommend the app on a scale of 0 to 10. Based on each user's response, the NPS survey classifies users in the following manner:

  • Detractors: Respondents with a score that is equal to or less than six

  • Passive Users: Respondents with a score of seven or eight

  • Promoters: Respondents with a score that's higher than eight

4. Feature-specific survey

A variant of the app-rating survey, this also uses a five-star rating system. But instead of getting overall app performance feedback, it's used to identify how users rate a specific feature, a change in pricing, or a customer support experience.

Here's an example of a feature-specific survey that asks users to rate a feature:

(Image Source)

Collecting and analyzing the feedback can help you learn what users really think about a new feature. It can also identify areas of improvement for specific features.

5. Satisfaction survey

A variant of the NPS survey, this survey helps you understand how happy your users are with the overall app or a specific workflow, such as the shopping cart checkout process.

6. Post-purchase survey

A survey that elicits important user feedback after a purchase takes place. Typically, users are asked to rate their overall purchase experience. Some post-purchase surveys may also ask users to rate other parts of their purchase, such as price, quality, and delivery time.

Here's a post-purchase survey that asks shoppers how they heard about the brand:

(Image Source)

By analyzing the results, the retailer can pinpoint the most profitable marketing channels and allocate funds accordingly.

The type of in-app feedback collection mechanism you use will depend on your goals. For example, if you're testing a new feature, you'll want to use a feature-specific survey. But if you want to improve the checkout process, conducting post-purchase surveys will provide better insights.

Why Should You Collect In-App Feedback?

In-app feedback helps you iteratively improve performance, enhance the user experience, pre-empt problems, and increase user retention.

Here's why collecting in-app feedback should be a bigger priority if it isn't already.

Improve App Performance

Poor app performance can negatively affect mobile app engagement. Your app users can help you identify the bugs, usability problems, and friction points that slow them down. User feedback also helps you prioritize the performance issues that need to be addressed first.

Here's an example of an app that asks users to report bugs:

(Image Source)

Fixing any reported bugs helps you improve app performance. It also shows your users that you care about improving their experience.

Get Near Real-Time Feedback

In-app feedback forms, questions, and NPS surveys help you collect frequent feedback right when users are using your app, which elicits more timely responses. A potential use case here is recovering lost revenue.

For example, let's say shoppers are abandoning their shopping carts at a high rate. Soliciting feedback can help you identify and address the issue. This could entail streamlining the checkout process or fixing a technical issue.

Help Prevent Bad User Experiences

Online users typically have a goal in mind when visiting a site or app, whether it's discovering new content or connecting with others. However, poor usability can prevent them from achieving their objectives.

Receiving negative feedback with respect to a new feature or update can enable you to identify what's broken. This helps you resolve urgent issues and prevent bad customer experiences before it's too late.

Increase Customer Engagement and Loyalty

The mobile app market is getting more saturated each year, with global mobile app downloads reaching 257 billion downloads in 2023.

Online users have no shortage of apps to choose from. Involving app users in your beta releases, roadmap planning, and feature prioritization processes and acting on their feedback will make them more invested in your app's success. 

How to Implement In-App Feedback Across the User Journey

Stop pestering your users with generic email survey links and feedback forms. Instead, use the right tools at each stage of the user journey to collect contextual in-app feedback.

Here's how.

Onboarding Stage: Understand Friction Points

An effective user onboarding process will help you deliver value to new users as early as possible and turn them into raving fans.

For example, Evernote uses an interactive checklist to welcome users and help them see the value of the platform early on:

(Image Source)

If you don't get users to that critical "aha" moment as quickly as possible, you could lose new users in the onboarding process.

To avoid squandering the precious conversion opportunity, use an onboarding tool to create in-app feedback opportunities during the onboarding process. Give preference to the tools that allow you to implement no-code in-product surveys. Use these surveys to target specific feedback requests based on each user's plan type, role, or previous interactions.

You should also use an onboarding tool to create guided onboarding workflows with specific in-app feedback surveys. Such a feature allows you to make changes to your feedback collection process without affecting the app's code.

Retention Stage: Collect User Engagement Data 

As your users begin to see value in your app and return to it frequently, you'll have more opportunities to understand how they engage with your product features.

Consider a fitness app with various features for activity tracking, meal planning, and goal setting. Collecting user engagement data can tell you which features they use most. With this information, you could use a product adoption tool to help users discover similar features and personalize their in-app experience.

Similarly, if you have multiple mobile apps across iOS and Android platforms, you may want to use a tool that offers all in-app feedback survey results in one consolidated dashboard. Tools that give you AI-based user sentiment scores based on each user's interactions offer an extra dimension of customer intelligence.

Retention Stage: Identify Bugs in Real Time

Leverage your users to catch those pesky production environment bugs in real-time by empowering them with in-app bug reporting tools.

Such bug reporting tools will deliver instant bug reports with the necessary supporting contextual details to your developers via email, Slack, or a project management app. Using these tools also helps you to automatically collect in-app user feedback with respect to app crash frequency, bug origin logs, and other performance issues. It can also increase retention by showing users that you value their feedback.

Mikolaj Pawlikowski, a site reliability engineer (SRE), says, "The secret is that you can turn a customer who found a problem into your biggest supporter. Give them an easy way to report the issue, make it easy to gather all the context you need, and then keep them informed about the progress and appreciate their input."

Retention Stage: Inform Customer Support

Chat tools are often not considered in-app feedback tools. But in reality, such tools can provide valuable in-app feedback on unknown usability issues.

For example, you can use a chat tool or API to implement a chatbot or live chat feature that offers users a real-time, in-app support messaging option. You can also use chat tools to collect in-app bug reports and performance issues directly from your users.

Advocacy Stage: Turn Delighted Users into Evangelists

Your ideal users who get the most value from your app are also the most likely to bring in more referrals. Delight your power users by using a feedback management tool to observe users, uncover actionable insights, prioritize user requests, and inform product strategy.

Camille Ricketts, Head of Brand and Communications at Notion says, "In the early days, we saw people on Twitter and Reddit sharing tips and providing support to other users. With a small marketing team, it was clear that this would be a way for us to amplify Notion."

The company features user feedback and testimonials on its product pages:

(Image Source)

Sometimes, predefined feedback options aren't enough to capture your users' pain points and feature requests. For instance, feedback management tools that allow you to watch how a user interacted with your app before submitting feedback can provide invaluable context.

Some specialized feedback management tools will also help you categorize all user events based on attributes, such as app platform, user device, user payment plan, and user demographic details. This allows you to better understand what each user is trying to achieve with your app --- helping you prioritize the right product roadmap to delight your ideal users and turn them into referral-attracting magnets.

5 Best Practices to Collect Meaningful In-App Feedback

Getting online users to share their thoughts isn't easy.

Apply the following best practices to improve your chances of getting meaningful responses.

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1. Use Quick and Direct In-App Prompts

Quick and easy-to-answer questions such as "Are you enjoying the app?" or "Was your checkout smooth?" give you the best chance of receiving useful user feedback.

The best user-feedback questions can help you answer a central hypothesis. For example, to understand the value your app delivers, ask your users how they'd feel if it no longer existed. Or, if you're looking to understand the usage patterns of a particular feature, ask your users whether they'd miss the feature if you rolled it back.

Bunch, a multiplayer gaming app, does a good job of asking its users one direct and quick-to-answer feedback question.

Keep feedback questions brief and limit them to one question. If you ask too many questions you'll likely get low response rates. Remember that feedback questions are like cologne — they're useful only when applied sparingly.

2. Don't Allow the User Experience to Suffer

Feedback requests work best when they're least disruptive to your users.

For instance, asking users for a Net Promoter Score (NPS) after they complete a task works better than interrupting them in the middle of that task.

While asking for feedback, you'd want users to only enter new information, so you wouldn't collect user names and mobile numbers if you already have these details.

Another important consideration: Taking your users to a new web page or screen that has an entirely different UI from your app when requesting feedback can be disorienting. That's why it's best to use in-app surveys.

For even better results, consider gamifying your feedback questions with a progress bar, social recognition, and in-app rewards.

For example, Paired, an award-winning app for couples, gently nudges its users to answer questions about themselves in exchange for an in-app reward.

Paired even shows the number of people who completed the challenge, which acts as a form of social proof. If you see others performing an action, you'll likely follow suit. Be sure to give users the option to dismiss a prompt or provide feedback later.

3. Triangulate Feedback from Multiple Sources

Relying on a single source of feedback won't provide a full picture of the user's experience. Use feedback from the app store, your social media pages, and support tickets to get a holistic understanding of user sentiment.

While in-app feedback is the most direct and convenient way to get user feedback, it's influenced by the user's most recent interactions with your app. So augment in-app feedback with other sources to get more detailed and non-contextual feedback.

For example, Tabby, a flexible four-installment buy now pay later app, has an average rating of 4.9 stars on the App Store — a sign that many of the users are happy with the app.

But among the five-star reviews, there's a user who faces a login problem.

Such reviews can help reveal potential bugs or accessibility issues. So reviewing your App Store account, social media pages, emails, and customer support tickets can help you uncover hidden user issues. Acknowledge that you've seen their feedback and update your response once you address the issue.

4. Prioritize Feedback from Your Most Valuable Users

If design by committee can kill your app, then implementing every piece of feedback you get is equally dangerous. Not all users are the same. Pay more attention to your power users and loyal brand advocates because they're more likely to fit your ideal customer profile.

Segment your users based on their lifetime value, and prioritize feedback from your most valuable users. Look for repeated comments or themes to help you prioritize feedback. For example, if multiple users request the addition of dark mode, consider moving that feature up in your product roadmap. This will keep your long-term users happy and show that your product is continuously improving.

5. Leverage Mobile App Event Tracking Tools

Even if users aren't leaving feedback in your app, you can still learn a great deal from their actions. Using event-tracking tools can help you better understand your users and get to the root cause of any issues.

For instance, such a tool will help you track user events like:

  • Logins and logouts

  • Clicks

  • Scrolls

  • Items added to cart

  • Purchases

  • Rage taps

  • Exits

And what those user actions mean:

  • The frequency of logins and logouts tells you how "sticky" your app is.

  • Button clicks tell you the effectiveness of your CTA and its placement.

  • Scrolls help you categorize the app into the most and least-used parts.

  • Shopping items inform you of user interests and likes.

  • Purchase data gives you insights into user buying patterns.

  • Rage taps and exits can help you identify usability issues.

Tracking mobile app events can also help you categorize users based on their actions. For example, you could identify users who are most likely to make in-app purchases or users who are most likely not to complete a purchase. Such user lists can help you take targeted actions and improve the odds in your favor.

5 Best Tools for Collecting In-App Feedback in 2024

Delivering better app experiences starts by capturing your users' feedback and tracking their actions. But you need the right tool to help with this process --- not easy when you look at the number of options available.

Here's a list of the best tools to help you collect and analyze in-app feedback.

1. Appcues: Best for NPS Surveys 

Appcues is a no-code platform that enables businesses to onboard users, showcase new features, and measure product adoption within their applications. With Appcues NPS, you can segment your users based on their behaviors and capture user sentiment. You can also prompt users to leave more open-ended feedback with slideouts.

Key features include:

  • NPS surveys: Appcues lets you create in-app surveys that help you measure and analyze customer loyalty.

  • Custom forms: Collect user feedback directly from the application. You can collect feedback from all users or narrow it down to detractors.

  • Feedback analysis: Analyze the feedback you receive and measure changes in customer satisfaction and loyalty over time.


  • Allows easy creation of in-app surveys without coding

  • Offers native integrations with popular apps like HubSpot

  • Features an extensive knowledge base


  • Initial learning curve for setting up and analyzing reports

  • May be cost-prohibitive for small businesses

Pricing: Starting at $249 per month (paid annually) for 2,500 monthly active users.

2. UserVoice: Best for Product Research

UserVoice voice is a robust user feedback tool that enables companies to turn user feedback into actionable insights. Where the tool shines is its ability to facilitate product research. With UserVoice, you can share prototypes of your product and get feedback from your users. This can help you validate product ideas before you invest resources to build them.

Key features include:

  • Feedback widget: Capture and collect user feedback directly in your website or mobile app. Push feedback into a Slack channel for visibility.

  • Feedback analytics: Quantity the potential revenue impact of new requests. This feature helps you prioritize feedback.

  • Customer alerts: Segment your users and send notifications when new feature requests go live.


  • Includes an intuitive feedback management portal

  • Integrates with popular platforms like Salesforce and Jira

  • Allows you to create product roadmaps based on feedback


  • Requires some initial setup and customization

  • May be cost prohibitive for small businesses

Pricing: Starts at $699 per month (billed annually).

3. Userpilot: Best for Personalized User Onboarding 

Userpilot provides businesses with tools to increase feature adoption and improve retention rates. If your users are dropping off during the onboarding, this tool is worth a closer look. It allows you to create in-app guides and highlight features to help users quickly derive value from your product. Of course, you can also add in-app surveys to capture user feedback.

Key features include:

  • Product analytics: Tag different elements in your product and track their usage. This helps you measure and analyze feature adoption rates.

  • User segmentation: Segment users' type based on their persona or in-app behaviors, and drive feature adoption with personalized messages.

  • Growth goals: Set up and track goals for your product experiences. This feature helps you optimize your product.


  • Offers a user-friendly interface

  • Provides extensive customization options

  • Users report responsive customer support


  • Features like A/B testing are only available on more expensive plans

  • Lacks a native mobile app

Pricing: Starts at $249 per month (billed annually).

4. Pendo: Best for In-App Surveys

Pendo is a comprehensive product experience platform. It offers various tools that help businesses deliver better digital experiences. One of these is an in-app feedback solution that lets users submit feedback, report technical issues, and request new features. AI-generated insights help you quickly measure user sentiment and identify key trends.

Key features include:

  • Analytics: Collect user data and analyze how they use your product. This can help you increase feature adoption.

  • In-app guides: Deliver more personalized onboarding experiences and quickly get users to derive value.

  • Session replays: Gain more context into your users' behaviors by viewing replays of their sessions.


  • Integrates with popular platforms like HubSpot and Intercom

  • Offers in-depth user guides to learn how to use the platform

  • Allows you to easily share feedback with the product team


  • Datasets can become overwhelming without proper segmentation 

  • Limited customization options when building dashboards

Pricing: Pendo offers custom pricing. Reach out to the vendor to request a quote.

5. Hotjar: Best for Website Heatmaps

Hotjar is a product analytics platform that offers a suite of tools, including heat maps that show you how users behave on your website. View session recordings to see where users get frustrated. You can also add surveys to your website to capture feedback from your users.

Key features include:

  • Session recordings: Session replays display clicks, mouse movements, and scrolling, enabling you to see how users interact with your website.

  • One-on-one interviews: Connect with participants from around the world to help validate your product designs. 

  • Funnels: See where users drop off in the customer journey. Then use the data to optimize your funnels and boost conversions.


  • Has free plans available to try the various tools

  • Offers AI capabilities to instantly create surveys

  • Allows you to record and view user sessions


  • Some users report the tool affects website loading times

  • Only works with websites and web-based applications

Pricing: Starts at $32 per user a month (billed annually) for heatmaps and session recordings.

Create Customizable In-App Chat Experiences

Using in-app chat is one of the most effective ways to collect in-app feedback.

But when developing a custom in-app chat experience, don't forget to factor development and maintenance costs into your evaluation criteria. For instance, creating an in-app chat experience from scratch can cost over $170,000 and at least 15 months of development effort.

However, a ready-made chat API significantly reduces the cost, time, and development effort needed to create a custom in-app chat experience. Editable UI kits further reduce the design effort needed to create a seamless brand experience.

So, instead of approaching in-app chat from the lens of in-house engineering capabilities, broaden your horizon to find the best-fit solution.

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