We’ve all been there. You’ve got a train to catch and your trusted taxi firm sends a driver over 20 minutes late. You’ve missed your train and worse still a company you’ve stayed loyal to have badly let you down. In these kinds of situations we often want to take our frustration out on someone – and the prime target is the company itself. Chances are you will tell your friends about your bad customer experience – you may even register a complaint with the firm.
Whenever we have a negative customer service incident, it has a massive bearing on who we decide to work with in the future. It niggles away at us, even if previously we’ve been happy with the service. Whether it’s a taxi firm, a retailer or an insurance company if we don’t get what we expect, 89% of us are likely to switch to another competitor.
The business may have already lost a valued customer but it’s how it reacts to bad service that is the clincher. If you do give them feedback on your experience, will they act on it? Research suggests they won’t and a recent study by Accenture found that around 75% of consumers are constantly re-evaluating who they do business with. In such a volatile marketplace it is essential that businesses consistently deliver satisfaction to their customers or risk losing them to their competitors.
Consumers are now harnessing technology to their advantage. It’s never been easier to shop around online and with web based rating sites like Trip Adviser and Yelp there’s no longer any point in taking a punt on a service when you can check over everyone else’s experiences and make an informed decision.
This highlights the importance of not only listening to your clients but also knowing what they want from your service and what you can do to set things right if things go wrong. In order to do that you need to ask the right questions from your customers.
A large proportion of consumers are willing to provide feedback to the service providers they use yet only a third of them believe the business will act on their comments. Unfortunately this is a continuing trend throughout all sectors. Consumers get frustrated, they complain but still nothing gets done and the business loses customers and leaks revenue.
Customer satisfaction surveys tap into how a customer perceives a brand, its core values and what it means to show loyalty. Understanding how a customer measures loyalty is at the heart of everything because it will ultimately determine whether they stay with one brand or move on to another. Therefore, when asking customers to rate their experience, brands need to be focusing on the things that people see as significant: that overall impression they will take with them after their purchase and pass on to others.
A survey will not only give you that impression but it can also gauge consumer behaviour which will shape your strategic activity and clearly define your sales process. With trends changing like the weather, these insights are vital to any consumer led organisation.