Dissatisfied customers are, unfortunately, an inevitable fact of business life. How you respond will determine whether the customer shares on social media how terrible your customer service is or will remain loyal to your company. Lots of brands have gone out of business because of poor customer service. More than ever, customers want to be treated with respect. According to the report Customers 2020 by Walker Information in collaboration with Customer Think and the Chief Customer Officer Council, by 2020 customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator.
In this article I will highlight the main reasons why customers leave dissatisfied and will unfold unpleasant facts about the impact of poor customer service on the brand. On the below infographic you will see valuable statistics from NewVoiceMedia and ClickFox about poor customer service effect on the business:
The price of not listening is high
“You learn when you listen. You earn when you listen—not just money, but respect.” —Harvey Mackay
You can have an exceptional product, however, if you fail to consider how it fits the needs and requirements of your customers you will lose your business. Not listening to your customers is one of the biggest mistakes businesses have ever made and it may lead to the following consequences which may be in some cases irreversible:
- angry customers
- lost business
- damaged reputation
Not listening to customers is not the only mistake which may have irrecoverable effect on your business. Inefficient customer service when most part of time is spent arguing with customers will also lead to unsatisfied customers. Treating customers without any respect and leaving their issues unresolved is the fastest way to become “famous” for the most terrible customer service.
In order to satisfy customers, companies have to keep up with the latest technological advances and train their staff or suffer the consequences. By introducing an efficient customer service strategy your business will have not only positive feedback but will also earn trust and customer loyalty.
Instead of complaining your customers will reveal the truth publicly
Social media is growing in popularity as an avenue for frustrated consumers to talk about their customer service experience publicly. Instead of contacting the company directly and complaining your customers will go to the masses and share what they think about your brand.
When you do not receive complaints this also does not mean all your customers are happy. According to Lee Resource for every customer complaint there are 26 other unhappy customers who have remained silent. Your customers’ silence is deadly for your business not only because you have lost the lifetime value these customers bring to your business but because of the impact these customers have on your potential prospects. When your customers complain they give you a unique opportunity to fix the issue and do whatever you can to win those customers back and prevent that issue from happening in the future.
An ability to post complaints empowers your customers to make your company better. Whenever you put all your efforts into providing a fast resolution to any complaint, you satisfy your customers’ needs and let them become your brand evangelists.
The Bottom Line
Poor customer service has a negative impact on any type of business. However, small businesses which rely on repeat sales and positive feedback for their success are affected most of all. While large corporations can exist with this and have new customers instead of those who have left, small companies will lose their market share. So what happens to companies which deliver poor customer service?
- Loss of loyal customers
- Loss of potential customers
- Loss of profit
- Loss of reputation
- Loss of employees
“3 R” Rule: Responsibility, Resolution, Respect
If you do not want your business to be among those companies which lost their customers and reputation due to poor customer service then your goal must be to use every service problem as an opportunity to impress the customer. When mistakes happen, use proactive recovery as the means to create customer loyalty. Here are some useful recommendations which will help you not only deliver great customer service but also go an extra mile and exceed your customers’ expectations:
- If you made a mistake do not be afraid to take responsibility and provide a fast solution. A proactive approach in this case and efficient customer service will help to solve the issue and win customer’s loyalty. And such little things as a sorry note, present or additional discount will form a positive rather than negative customer experience.
- Offer a quick resolution to any complaint, do not leave negative feedback or complaint unresolved.
- Treat your customers with respect. Train your customer care team to treat each customer with respect and take into account all their needs and requirements.
If you have got examples of poor customer service or recommendations to those companies which would like to improve their customer service, you are welcome to share your ideas in the comments to this blog post.