What happens after a bad customer service experience? What happens when the customer decides to ditch your business in favor of your competitors? Does it end there, or does that customer sing like a canary about how they were treated and why they left? There are a ton of studies and statistics that can tell us exactly what transpires when one shoddy customer service event sends a customer packing.
Knowing the likely outcome of poor service is all a business owner needs to know to step up service and ensure that every customer’s transaction is positive. Let’s take a look.
Why they leave. What are the top two reasons for customer loss? According to the Customer Experience Impact Report by Harris Interactive/RightNow, customers clear out when they feel they are being poorly treated, and when problems aren’t resolved in a timely manner. Harris Interactive also found that CSRs failed to answer consumers’ questions 50% of the time. In addition, customers are big on talking to live agents, and an American Express survey showed that 67% of people will hang up the phone when they are not able to speak with a real person.
Who they tell. The White House Office of Consumer Affairs tells us that news of bad customer service reaches twice as many people as news of good customer service. They further assert that for every customer who complains, 26 more don’t say a word to the company. Moreover, a study by Touch Agency found that over 1 million people view tweets about customer service weekly, and 80% of those tweets are negative.
What happens next. Lee Resources found that a whopping 91% of dissatisfied customers will not continue to do business with the company who wronged them. And American Express stated that 3 out of 5 Americans would try a new brand or company for a better customer service experience. So, Kate Zabriskie, owner of Business Training Works, Inc., was right when she said, “Although your customers won’t love you if you give bad service, your competitors will.”
How to fix it. Award winning speaker and customer service training expert, Ruby Newell-Legner, stated that it takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one unresolved negative experience. And Lee Resources found that if you resolve a complaint in the customer’s favor, they will continue to do business with you 70% of the time. Don’t make the mistake of sidestepping better service for lower prices. According to the Customer Experience Impact Report by Harris Interactive/RightNow, 9 out of 10 U.S. consumers would pay more for better service!
What’s the moral of the story? Spend considerable time training your CSRs, treat customers the way you want to be treated, and go out of your way to make things right when something goes terribly wrong. It’s worth the extra effort.