Customer Experience News & Trends

5 costly blunders that make customers leave

Customers leave because they aren’t happy about how they’ve been treated. But what are those little — and sometimes big — things that take them over the edge?

If you’ve worked in the customer experience field for any length of time, you’ve heard that the vast majority (roughly 68% to be exact) of customers leave a business because they felt they were treated with indifference. The others who don’t come back either die, move or find better business relationships.

But that “perceived indifference” can mean different things to different customers and businesses. Behind indifference are very real actions and reactions that give upset customers enough reason to walk away.

Why they walk — and what to avoid

Here are five common reasons and incidents that cause customers to leave, often without saying a word. Plus, we’ve included some tips on how to avoid these issues.

  1. Break a promise. Most people on the front line don’t make promises they can’t keep. But they often aren’t the only people involved in the promises. For instance, if one person takes a message, she might say, “He’ll email you.” Problem is, he might not — and a promise is broken. It’s always smart to only promise what you can personally deliver. For instance, “I’ll relay the message.”
  2. Argue. Customers may not always be right, but anyone who argues with them will always be wrong. Regardless of the disagreement, employees want to find something to agree on and move on. For instance, “I agree this is frustrating. Let’s find a solution right away.”
  3. Be dismissive. Most people and experiences are nice for customers. But when they run into an oddball situation where their feelings are hurt, the next person who hears about it or deals with them needs to acknowledge that something went astray and express an understanding for customers’ feelings. All it takes is, “I can understand why you’re upset that this has happened to you. I apologize and want to help resolve it now.”
  4. Give bad information. Because business and information moves quickly, even the best front-line customer service professionals aren’t able to stay on top of every bit of information customers need. Give out the wrong info and it could affect customers badly. If you aren’t 100% sure, tell customers how long it’ll take you to find out, rather than risk passing on information that will disappoint them.
  5. Be grumpy. We all have bad days, but letting it spill over into customer relationships is a surefire way to prompt customers to walk. They can’t recognize that impatience, rudeness or distance is just a one-day incident when they only contact you once a month. So they’ll assume it’s always like that — and choose not to do business with people or companies like that. So encourage employees to take themselves off the front line once in a while if they can’t give customers their best.

5 Essential Strategies for Managing a Multi-Generational Workforce in Your Contact Center

Take a couple minutes today and simply look out onto the production floor of your contact center. Chances are pretty great that you are seeing a diverse group of people that span across several generations.  Read more!

Subscribe Today

Get the latest customer experience news and insights delivered to your inbox.