Customer service is the backbone of any organization. Good customer service keeps clients coming back for more, but it only takes one bad experience to send loyal customers to the competition. Find out how negative consumer feedback affects your company, and learn how to prevent poor customer service from ruining your organization's reputation.
Recognizing the Importance of Word of Mouth
When it comes to free advertising, word of mouth can be a double-edged sword. According to Customer Experience Update, a whopping 92 percent of consumers trust recommendations from family and friends over any other type of marketing. While customers like to share their positive experiences, they're also quick to vent their negative customer service experiences. A study from call center software provider Five9 found that 85 percent of dissatisfied customers feel it necessary to retaliate against a company if customer service did not meet their expectations. One of the most popular ways, especially for consumers aged 18 to 34, is through social media posts.
Perfecting the Customer Experience
The best way to avoid unwanted fallout from poor customer service is to head off the issue before it even begins. Train employees to resolve customer complaints quickly and efficiently. Immediately find out what issue the customer has, and determine what you can do to rectify the problem before the customer moves on to the competition. Make each customer feel appreciated and valued by providing a personal touch, and treat each client with patience and respect. Ensure that all customer service representatives have a strong knowledge of your organization's products and services.
Getting a Second Chance
After a loyal customer has moved on, is it possible to get him back? Customer Experience Update found that customers are very unwilling to return to an organization where they received poor customer service, even if it was only one experience. Further, most consumers, 60 percent, say that they're unwilling to return to the establishment even if a trusted friend or family member claims that service has improved. Positive word of mouth isn't enough to sway most consumers who have already experienced poor customer service for themselves.
Making Amends for Poor Customer Service
When it does become necessary to take action after a poor customer service experience, try to win the customer back by apologizing. Take responsibility for the issue, and find a way to fix it. Offer customers incentives that draw them back to your company, making sure these items or discounts are better than anything offered by the competition.
Negative consumer feedback can spell trouble for any company, so it's important for managers to deal with bad customer service appropriately. Too many complaints from loyal customers can send shockwaves through an organization, costing the company sales, money and its reputation.
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