I had a poor customer service experience recently which got me thinking about how important customer service is. Having worked in this industry for most of my life, I have certain expectations I have come to look for as a consumer, and I am fairly unrelenting on them. I’m certain I am not alone when I say I have walked away from making a purchase when I was ignored by the person behind the counter, or felt like my presence was a burden (sorry to interrupt your conversation about the party you went to on the weekend). 78% of customers have backed out of a purchase due to a poor customer experience. However, there is also a fine line in being overburdening of your customer too (no, for the 3rd time, I don’t need any help thank you). I feel the same rules apply in online and social media marketing. Especially since 80% of consumers aged 18 to 34 say social media is an effective customer service channel. I personally don’t like the chatbots that pop up on sites asking if there is anything they can help with. If I choose to seek help, just make it simple to find either via a phone number, live chat option, email, or knowledge database. The statistics still show the top three ways consumers seek help are through phone, email, or in person.
Word of mouth referrals is still the best form of compliment for a business.
Have you noticed that how people are searching for reviews and suggestions on products and services has never truly changed? What has changed is the number of people who can see those reviews, share them, and comment. Consumers still reach out to others for references or referrals in order to make an informed decision. Perhaps you see those posts on your social media accounts too from your friends and family? There is even a “looking for recommendations” option for posts on Facebook.
In my research, I came across some statistics that echo my thoughts and opinions.
It takes 12 positive customer experiences to make up for one negative experience.
Acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times more expensive than retaining an existing one.
89% of consumers are more likely to make another purchase after a positive customer service experience.
93% of customers are likely to make repeat purchases with companies that offer excellent customer service.
Nearly three out of five consumers report that good customer service is vital for them to feel loyalty toward a brand.
70% of the customer’s journey is based on how the customer feels they are being treated.
Only 1 in 26 customers will tell a business about their negative experience; according to customer service facts, the rest simply leave.
I firmly believe that every person should work in a customer service position at some point in their life. Not only does it build character, but it goes along with the old “walk a mile in my shoes” saying. It is easier to relate having experienced it from both ends of the spectrum. As for my recent experience, the issue was resolved in a timely manner, however I am uncertain if I will be returning at this point. I guess time will tell.
Is customer service as important to you? Who do you find you are telling about a bad experience, and where? Is it in conversation, on a social media account, google, or yelp reviews?