It is estimated that the average value of each lost customer in Poland amounts to 145 euros per year, and losses resulting from lost profits of companies in Poland are nearly $18 billion a year. Research shows that the Achilles heel of many companies is the low quality of customer service.
A study was conducted in 2010 that was attended by 8 800 consumers representing every age group and income (min. 500 people from each country surveyed). The following countries were surveyed: Australia, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, France, the Netherlands, India, Canada, Mexico, Germany, New Zealand, Poland, Russia, USA, Great Britain, and Italy.
The report "The Cost of Poor Customer Service: The Economic Impact of the Customer Experience and Engagement" shows that the low level of customer service results in huge losses for companies--up to $338.5 billion a year! You can easily see that these losses are associated with the complete absence of company services or the migration of customers to the competition mainly because of bad experiences with customer service.
According to the survey, the average value of each lost customer is $243 a year. Losses are defined as the transfer of the transaction to the competition (63% of consumers) and the resignation of services (37% of consumers).
Results of this study clearly demonstrate the value of quality customer service. It leads to huge potential in developing business relationships that translate into increased sales and business development.
The importance of quality customer service.
Think about the long-term reputation of the company, not the short term. Focusing only on selling will just annoy potential customers and lose the opportunity to sell. If you want to sell without selling, you need to ensure a positive customer experience in all contacts with the company. Think of global brands that people love.
Apple fans are faithful through a positive experience--quality products, aesthetic experience, customer service, and self-esteem. Think about the companies you know that provide exemplary care for customers both before and after purchase. Remember certain situations, e.g., when you purchased advertised equipment. How quickly did you get in touch with the customer service department?
How long did you have to wait to connect with the appropriate department? How was your problem was solved? Were you happy with the whole process of customer service? Would you buy another product from this company? For such questions, not only do you want an answer but your customers do too.
If your customers are not satisfied with the quality of your service, not only will they not buy any more products from you, but they will also not recommend your products to friends. Not investing in improving the quality of the entire customer service process will cost you even more in terms of money and customers.
91% of consumers have no further business with a company because of poor customer service.
You need to treat customers as special people. You need to make customer service friendly for everyone no matter whether it’s during a personal meeting, e-mail correspondence, or a telephone conversation. Small gestures, such as a warm welcome, attentive listening, and kind wishes for a nice day, would be good in dealing with the customer. Consider setting automated welcome messages to greet your customers right after they interact with your brand. The best rule: treat others as you would like to be treated.
40% of customers said that improving interaction with customer service staff is the key factor for them to spend more money in the company.
Be available. Tony Hsieh of Zappos Company believes that customer service is an investment in marketing. The Zappos do not have any targets. They are not concerned with how many phone contacts consultants should have each hour or how long the conversation should last. They just want consultants to be available to customers to solve their problems. It's hard not to agree with this approach.
Customers really appreciate when their cases are resolved during just one phone call, without switching, unnecessary expectations, and being forced to use an automated hotline. That's why it's important to have an appropriate number of consultants, a technical department, and traders who will be able to efficiently solve customer problems, answer their questions, and provide all necessary information.
Be sure to have the contact email address or phone number in a prominent place on the corporate website. Availability is important for better customer service and the chance for your business to make a sale.
51% of customers said they had tried to get support before deciding not to buy.
Customers appreciate fast, reliable, and helpful contact with the company. They are even willing to spend more for better customer service. Improving the quality of customer service seems to be the key to success. Quality is often remembered more than the price!