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For developers of new products and services, accurate feedback is worth its weight in gold. That’s why corporations spend billions of dollars on market testing and feedback channels.

Now, a new web-based service allows any business or organisation to simply and effectively solicit feedback from customers, track which requests are most popular and implement those changes as a priority. And during its beta period, it’s free.

User Voice works loosely like a forum, but it’s hyper-targeted to delivering feedback on actions desired by users. I discovered it when the developer of Todoist, a simple online to-do list manager I use, recently adopted it as a means determining what he should be doing next to improve the service.

Users begin with eight votes, which they can allocate (maximum of three per request) to existing or new feature requests. They can gain more votes by sharing demographic information about themselves, which obviously helps developers and marketers to analyse request data.

Administrators can choose to accept any task request at any time, but the emphasis is naturally on the requests with the most user votes. On Todoist’s User Voice site, the most popular request was integration with Google Calendar, so the developer has accepted this request. I’m guessing it will be the next feature added to the service. Which is pleasing, not to mention transparent and democratic.

Sound interesting? Check out the User Voice demo video below.

You can create your own account and customise it so the service integrates with your site. The service is most obviously suitable for developers of web-based businesses, but it really can be applied by anyone wanting practical feedback on, well, pretty much anything.

User Voice helps you build community while also providing a roadmap for negotiating all those troublesome forks in the road.

Highly recommended. Check it out.