Customer Experience News & Trends

4 customer service sins that kill loyalty

Customer loyalty is easy to gain these days. But customers are fickle. So it’s even easier to lose. Commit one of these sins, and you’ll lose it fast.

You don’t want to end up disappointing customers, which often leads to broken loyalty.

That’s why you’ll want to take steps to avoid these four mistakes that break up many customer relationships.

Customers say they consider leaving a relationship when a company …

1. Doesn’t pay enough attention

Customers reach out, interact and respond in a variety of ways. When companies miss their requests, issues, complaints or feedback, customers feel slighted.

In fact, almost 60% of customers say that having an issue unaddressed while continuing to receive offers or correspondence unrelated to that is a top reason they’d end the business relationship, a Talend survey recently found.

Tip: When customers have an issue on hold (because it can’t be immediately resolved or you need more information from them, for instance), put all other communications on hold. Customers are almost always focused on their issues at hand and won’t want to hear about anything else.

2. Doesn’t understand them

Only 61% of customers feel the companies they deal with understand their needs, the Talend survey found. Yet, almost 90% of company leaders say, “Yes, of course, we understand our customers.”

That points to a big expectation gap that can get filled with customer frustration.

According to researchers, one of the best ways to lessen the expectation gap is to give more employees information that can help them understand customers and meet their needs. Often, customer data — whether it’s formal or informal — is funneled to just customer service and sales pros. So the folks in Accounting, for example, may never know that customers are often confused by the invoices.

Tip: Round up the top complaints and compliments each month and share them either throughout the company or with the departments that touch those issues.

3. Doesn’t get their feedback

Only about half of companies systematically track customer feedback across many channels, the Talend study found. Either they don’t track some channels or they don’t look at all the feedback as a whole.

Some customers will give their most candid feedback in social media. Others will call. Others will wait until you send a survey. All of their voices together will give the best picture of how the masses perceive your experience.

Tip: Put it all together. If you gather customer feedback in more than one channel, pull it all together before you analyze what customers have to say. What happens — or fails to happen — in one channel affects overall satisfaction, and companies need to know how to build off successes and failures.

4. Breaks the confidence

Today, companies often lose their customers’ confidence when they gather, use and then lose customer information. In fact, more than half of customers say they’d consider breaking ties with a company that had a data breach, the Talend survey found.

Tip: Your IT people do all they can to prevent data breaches, but breaches still happen. Hope for the best, and prepare for the worst. Just like any other potential disaster that your company can face, prepare a disaster recovery plan for data breaches that includes who will disseminate information to customers, and when and how that will happen.

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