No business is going to retain all of its customers; you have some that want your services, and some that don’t. But constantly losing customers is a problem, especially if it’s hurting your overall revenues, and it is usually indicative of a larger problem with your customer service approach rather than with your product or service itself. A Customer Experience Impact Report by Harris Interactive/RightNow conducted in 2010 found that there are two main reasons for customer loss:
1. Customers feel poorly treated.
It may seem obvious, but the causes behind this reason are more complex than you may think. Customer retention is more often about the customers and how they feel rather than about your product or service and what it offers them. Usually, if customers approach you for something they need or want, they are likely to stay as long as they are not pushed away. And to avoid sending them packing to your competitors, make them feel like they matter. This means answering promptly, addressing their concerns and adding value to their comments.
2. Businesses fail to solve a problem in a timely manner.
You may promise your customers that you will solve their problems, but if you fail to deliver, you will simply leave them feeling disillusioned and unsatisfied. Failing to solve a problem quickly not only makes you seem slow in providing services, but it also gives the illusion that you don’t care enough about your customers to address them as your first priority. That’s why automated systems rarely work – customers feel like they’re not being listened to. From a malfunctioning product to a service not performed adequately, work to solve each customer’s individual issue as soon as possible.
Ultimately, there’s no substitution for knowledgeable, human service. You’ll be amazed at what happens when you go out of your way to be an available and authentic voice on the other end of the line. If you are simply too busy to offer personalized service to all of your customers, consider hiring a virtual receptionist to take care of this for you. It’s a worthwhile investment because you will ultimately be able to retain more customers and retain more revenue if they feel like they are receiving good service.