Comments From Users - How to Analyse and Synthesise

I have about 1000’s of comments from our users, I was wondering if there is a process you follow to analyze comments that we received in the app? These comments vary from “I hate this app” to “I have this problem”. My goal is to understand how do I identify the top issues and understand the most bothering issues our users have. Is there a process I can follow to maybe, come up with the top 10 issues our users are having? Any resources on this would be greatly helpful.

That’s a lot of data!

I’ve dropped it into Excel and did “Conditional Formatting” to try and highlight duplicates. Since they’re user comments it’s unlikely there will be many exact duplicates, but it might help narrow things down a bit.

Then I have to manually do the work. I end up printing it off and start with #1, then look for anything that’s expressing the same idea and put a tally mark next to #1 to show the idea was repeated, then cross out the duplicate so I can visually keep track. It takes awhile, but I’ve personally never found a good way to automate this process. Especially with user comments since they often express anywhere from 1-5 ideas at once.

It ends up looking something like this (some random comments pulled from Roblox reviews on Google Play)…

The 4th comment has two ideas similar to the first. The red is an issue with the controls, the blue is an issue with mobile. FYI I don’t usually color-code as there are usually too many ideas to keep track, I just did that for the sake of clarity in this example. =)

Personally, my experience is it really takes a human brain to understand the meaning behind each comment and lump them together. It takes awhile, but that’s why we have jobs. =)

If you end up finding a tool that helps sift through all that in a more efficient and effective way, please do share! Go get 'em.