Use Customer Service to Keep Shoppers Happy and Build a Better Business

Written by Small Business Tips. Posted in Building customer loyalty, How to make customers feel special, Increasing customer loyalty

How to build customer loyalty

According to the 2012 Forrester Customer Service Index, only 37% of brands received good or excellent customer experience index scores. Some 64%, however, received ratings of “OK,” “poor,” or “very poor” from their customers. Though measuring customer satisfaction is not always a priority for many businesses, and some find that not working on good customer care skills does not hurt them, providing quality customer care is a great way for businesses to set themselves apart. In today’s highly competitive business marketplace that is loaded with companies who offer similar products and services, making customers feel special might make a difference between success and failure.

Though measuring customer satisfaction seems like it might be difficult to do, in reality, businesses can do so by figuring out how much they lose when customers do not receive the right service. The Parature Customer Service Blog states that, every year, American businesses lose $83 billion because of defections and abandoned purchases. By determining the amount lost in those two areas, businesses can determine the exact cost of not having proper customer service strategies in place, and maybe realize that doing so will be quite beneficial.

One stat that all businesses should consider when measuring customer satisfaction is the number who leave and head to a competitor. The RightNow Customer Experience Impact Report of 2011 found that nearly 90% of consumers began doing business with a competitor after a poor customer experience. In addition to sales that fail, the number of customers who go to a different company can cripple a business, so working on customer service techniques and maintaining customer loyalty can be a worthwhile venture for owners and managers.

While there are several ways for businesses to improve customer satisfaction, one of the most effective is to provide employees with good service incentives. Less then half of U.S. contact centers reward agents for high customer satisfaction ratings, according to last year’s U.S. Contact Center Decision Makers Guide. The reality of many work environments is that, quite simply, employees work harder when they can make more money. So rewarding them for strong customer service can help build a better brand.

Perhaps the most important reason for building a strong customer service program is that it will result in positive word of mouth reviews. The Forrester Research Blog suggests that customer power has become more important, and nearly three quarters of consumers trust recommendations from friends and family, rather direct mail and other marketing platforms. As a result, any business looking to build a positive reputation and attract new loyal customers should make great customer service a priority. More like this: Directbuy