Implementing strategic customer service isn’t difficult.
Or is it?
I buy a product or service, and I’m super happy with it and would purchase it again. But then I never heard from the company again. Sound familiar?
They lost me as a customer and potential brand ambassador. If this happens to me, it will likely happen to other customers, leading to an overall loss in sales and profits. And it’s totally avoidable.
The company may say they struggle with sales, but my impression is that they don’t care. This might not be the case and very often isn’t either. Still, businesses need to understand how poor customer service affects brand loyalty, referrals, marketing retention and branding, and improving it can boost their profits. The brand reputation is damaged.
Apparently, more than half of customers would pay higher prices if they knew they were getting a better service. Read that again? If that doesn’t read potential, I don’t know what does.
I recently read a Salesforce blog that collated statistics from multiple reliable sources. Some of the data points are not new, but they are worth repeating because business owners are clearly missing out on them.
Here’s the important statistic. It takes 12 positive experiences to make up for one negative one. That is how much we rely on reviews, word of mouth, etc. In simple terms. You cannot ignore customer service no matter how amazing your product, branding or service solution is.
89% of businesses have stopped contracts due to bad customer service. I’m sure if you think about it – how often have you worked with a brand or company and had a bad experience where you’ve decided never to return? Would they have been able to change your mind if they’d reached out to you to ask for your experience and done something to rectify the situation?
For most people, the answer is yes because we all want to feel cared for and special. Doing the same in your business and with your customers would be best. Show them you care by asking them if they’re happy. Build a brand that cares and makes people happy.
83% of online customers require some form of online customer service while making an online purchase.
45% of transactions are cancelled if their questions or concerns are not dealt with quickly and efficiently.
People are four times more likely to purchase if a friend or colleague refers to it. And they are likely to spend over 50% more than other customers.
Can you really ignore these facts? Are you losing customers for simple reasons that could have been avoided?
- Always be transparent about what is happening. If things take longer than expected, tell the customer without trying to hide it.
- Tell your customers where the money goes if your price is higher because of other fees.
- And for you, the retailer… be transparent about refunds and returns. There is nothing more frustrating for a customer than a shady return policy. It will never work in your favour unless you deliberately try to scam the customers.
- Are you selling a service and are double-booked or running late? Be honest and human. You’ll be surprised how much sympathy there is out there compared to if you’re trying to make up an excuse.
- Always provide a contact number and email where customers can get hold of you. Be sure to answer within 24 hours. The quicker, the better.
- If you encounter a lot of similar questions and situations, consider creating an FAQ for your website. Direct customers to this page to see if they can find the answer they are looking for.
- Install a quick bot that can answer the most basic questions. However, don’t make a bot that tries to be a human. It doesn’t work anymore. Just be honest that you have a bot. Most customers will be pleased if they have a question. If not, always have another alternative to hand.
The main thing you must remember is marketing retention = keeping your existing customers.
As I mentioned, my experience with the lack of attention to retention marketing is staggering. I need to buy small consumable products repeatedly, yet I don’t get a reminder offer or note to welcome me back. This is a massive loss of potential income and profits. Here are some quick tips to consider:
- Always keep an email list
- Segment your customers
- Keep in regular personal contact. Nobody wants to feel like they are one of the masses. Everyone wants to feel special.
- Email me to say thank you and ask if I’m happy.
- Email me when it’s my birthday with an offer.
- Email me a week or two after my purchase and ask about my experience.
- Email me a couple of months later and ask whether I’d like to rebuy it.
- Email me and ask me to follow you on social media.
- The list goes on and on… yet so many companies do nothing, and it’s money lost.
I will leave you with one more statistic to consider about the importance of customer service to your branding.
So, think about it: Do you really want to spend more money to attract new customers when all you need to do to increase your profits is keep in touch with your customers who have already said yes?!
If you enjoyed this and want to learn how to create brand loyalty, read more about it here.
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