No business would ever admit that they are on a mission to lose customers, but companies do just that every single day. By discovering the practices that chase customers away, businesses can take the necessary steps to avoid them and maintain a base of satisfied customers that builds a healthy bottom line. We have six easy ways that companies unintentionally lose customers.
Customers do not like to be ignored - period. They want to be acknowledged when they walk into your office (which means employees should stop personal conversations to focus on them), and they want their phone calls and emails answered promptly. Make your customers feel like the VIPs of your company that they are by giving them your full attention – all the time and at every point of contact.
Refuse to Listen to Them
Many companies make the mistake of assuming they know what customers want – even if they never took the time to ask them. When a customer has a question or complaint, these companies give them an answer based on what they think the customer wants to hear, rather than really listening to the problem, identifying it and finding the right solution.
Mislead Them or Lie to Them Outright
It sounds sinister to suggest that companies intentionally lie to their customers, but the truth is that many companies are guilty of chasing customers away by not telling the whole truth. It could be as simple as telling a customer that a product with be in on Tuesday when it doesn’t arrive until Friday. It could be a matter of promising a customer a phone call the following day, and then forgetting to pick up the phone.
Don’t Worry about Consistency
Few things are more frustrating to a customer than receiving stellar service during one visit to your business and horrible service the next time. When customers don’t know what to expect from your service reps, they are likely to make a move to your competitor down the street, where the service is more predictable overall.
Assume They will Stick with You No Matter What
Any business that assumes a customer won’t up and leave at the first bad service encounter may be sadly mistaken indeed. In this tight economy, customers are looking for value first and foremost, and service plays an important role in a customer’s overall view of the value she receives from a business. Never assume that after a single bad experience, your customer won’t have one foot out the door.
Treat Your Service Employees Badly
Customer service employees that are treated badly by their managers frequently treat customers badly in return. It is essential that managers give CSRs the respect, courtesy and support they need to serve their customers well. Not only does proper management behavior boost staff morale, but it also serves as an example of how CSRs are expected to treat your customers.
Losing customers is never the goal for any business, but many companies inadvertently do just that by letting their service quality slide. Keep these mistakes in mind when training customer service reps to ensure your employees are making customers happy, rather than driving them to the competition.