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The Real Cost of Bad Customer Service

By: SmallBizClub

 

The Real Cost of Bad Customer Service

Customer Service is sacred to any business, but how can you really measure the significance of its impact? So called bad customer service stems from the reluctance to embrace what the customer actually wants and how to effectively deliver it. If you can direct your customer as quickly as possible to the desired destination then you have already been able to succeed in gaining their trust. Trust is the first component of any customer service platform, gain and maintain this and you will be able to achieve your goal.

So what is bad service?

Ultimately, things that come to light during this analysis are lengthy automated self-service menus, long wait times, poor attention, and inexperienced and badly trained agents. These are key when thinking about how your customer or client will respond to your business. A staggering 75% of customers believe it takes too long to reach a live person and 78% ended a business relationship due to bad service. It was found that typically 50% of customer service agents fail to answer customer questions and 61% of customers went to a competitor due to bad service.

These failings in customer service cost the service industry nearly £300 million a year worldwide. This startling cost highlights the need to improve and streamline processes to ensure less losses are incurred over time. How can you achieve good customer service through personalization, clear responses, competencies and convenience? Employ the aid of an expert in the industry and deal with a specialist.

What are you actually losing?

Customers! Customers! Customers!

With continuous bad customer service you will simply lose customers and ultimately this will jeopardize your business’s bottom line as a result. Difficulty lies in qualifying the actual damage bad customer service can cause, however you can assume that if your clients/customers are treated better somewhere else it is unlikely that they will want to come back to you. Positive referrals and recommendations are essential for any business that wants to succeed and prosper. Customers return on the basis that their needs have been met and even exceeded in some cases, surpassing customer expectation will lead to growth due to the positive feedback and referrals provided by your customers. Social persuasion can also provide further leverage for growing your customer base and gaining new clients, it can also be the key to unlock a static customer or client.

Time for change

Time is an essential component in business, if not used efficiently when you are dealing with a customer on any of your communication channels you may see a decline in return or repeat business. With any of your customer support channels it is essential that you use a path that allows your customer to easily navigate through the system, this allows your customer to contact you swiftly and not feel like they’re wasting time and getting nowhere.

Build trust with your customer by personalizing their experience. Be proactive about how you respond and provide a multi-channel support system. These key features are vital when looking for solutions that can help to reduce cost, improve efficiencies, decrease customer wait times, improve customer satisfaction and streamline payment systems. These are all pivotal points when it comes to strengthening any business’s customer service profile.

How to preserve your customer base

What is it actually costing you? Your customer base which you have spent so long building up and nurturing to your advantage. Losing customers due to bad customer service is just not an option anymore. Conducting reviews and carrying out changes are key features to consider and many companies offer a helping hand in streamlining systems in order to rebalance efficiencies.

More than a quarter of consumers chose to spend less with a company or took their business elsewhere thanks to poor customer service during 2016, costing firms over £37 billion. In February 2017 Sky News reported “New research from Ombudsmen Services, which provides independent dispute resolution for a number of the UK’s economic sectors including energy and communications, shows that 28% of people report losing loyalty for a brand after receiving bad service.” The report authors surveyed almost 2,500 people across the UK and also found that complaints against Britain’s firms increased by 3 million last year, reaching a total of 55 million.

Lewis Shand Smith, Chief Ombudsman at Ombudsman Services, explains: “This research shows that much more needs to be done to make the customer ‘king’ from a customer service point of view.” He goes on to say that; “The problem is that 63% of consumers feel disillusioned and feel resigned to poor service, and no longer trust businesses to do the right thing.”

Reputation is paramount, especially when you are dealing with high profile clients, delivering the results that they require efficiently and effectively is also at the forefront of any business with a multichannel customer service strategy.

Author: Sarah Close is a freelance marketing manager and is currently working with C3, a Cambridge-based company specializing in computer telephony platforms and associated multichannel applications. Follow @C3stweets .

Published: May 1, 2017
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