There’s no denying that customers are the lifeblood of any business. Have you ever wondered how good your company’s customer service is from the customer’s perspective? If not, a survey conducted by the W.P. Carey School of Business in Arizona State University should prompt you to do so. Today.com news contributor Herb Weisbaum discusses an unfortunate finding of the study:
Americans are not very happy consumers. We’re frustrated and angry — and for good reason.
More people than ever are dissatisfied with the products and services they buy, according to a new report from Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business. And when there is a problem, we’re less happy with the customer service we receive.
The number of households that experienced “customer rage” — saying they were very or extremely upset about the company response when they complained — jumped from 60 to 68 percent since the last survey in 2011.
More of us are expressing that rage by yelling and cursing at customer-service representatives than two years ago. Yelling increased from 25 percent to 36 percent of the time; cursing jumped from 7 to 13 percent, even though neither are the most effective ways to get consumer satisfaction.
According to statistics, it costs seven times as much to land a new customer as it does to retain an existing one, so it really pays to keep your client base happy. What exactly causes bad customer services? TeleDirect, a leading call center outsourcing firm, says the following are the top culprits:
Customer Service is Secondary
In many cases, companies prioritize improving their product features and relegate customer service to the backburner. As a market matures, though, competing products start to share same features, and customer service becomes a more prominent factor in determining which company a client does business with.
If an employee can pick up a phone, he or she can handle customer service, right? Not exactly. To provide excellent customer service, an employee needs ample training in areas like client handling, as well as extensive knowledge of product specifications. If not, how can he or she give meaningful help to callers?
Lack of Resources
All companies want to provide great customer service to their clients, but few have the resources to set up an in-house customer relations department. Fortunately, outsourced call centers provide a cost-effective option, since they already have the manpower, equipment, and infrastructure to deliver topnotch customer service.
As the saying goes, if your business takes care of its customers, your customers will take care of your business. Strive to improve your customer service to keep your clients happy and your bottom line healthy.
(Source: Consumers have had enough, ‘rage survey’ says, Today.com, December 10, 2013)