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Sonoma County Gazette
Marketing 101 by Elizabeth Slater

How Many of your Customers are Unhappy?

Jul 30, 2017
by Elizabeth Slater


I have been researching customer service lately and have found some interesting statistics from a number of different sources. The main thing that came through in virtually all the sites I researched was that only a small, small percentage of customers who are dissatisfied actually register a complaint with the company. The rest of them don’t come back.

Here are some Customer Service Facts, Quotes & Statistics from Help Scout. On average, loyal customers are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase. Take a look at the average first purchase of your customers and multiply that by 10.

On average, loyal customers are worth up to 10 times as much as their first purchase. Take a look at the average first purchase of your customers and multiply that by 10. The probability of selling a new prospect is 5-20% while the probability of selling to an existing customer is 60 -70% Engaging and connecting with first-time visitors is much more likely to bring them back to buy from you again.

For every customer who bothers to complain, 26 other customers remain silent.Create an easy process for customers to give you feedback. Pay attention to the feedback and use the information for staff training. Any business with customers Is in the people business. We tend to define our businesses by the products or services we sell. Though the most important thing to remember is that we are in the business of providing good experiences for customers, no matter what the product. Although your customers won’t love you if you give bad service, your competitors will. 

I doubt that your main reason for being in business is to make life easier for your competitors, though if you are not focusing on customer service that’s exactly what’s happening. 80% of companies say they deliver superior customer service. 8% of people think these same companies deliver superior customer service. In other words: Don’t believe everything your think. Follow up your opinions with real data but asking your customers in person, through surveys, or over the phone how they feel about your company.

Now we know the problem, so what can we do to ameliorate this problem? The first thing is to get to know your customers so that they will be comfortable telling you when something has gone wrong. Once you know the problem you can also apologize and make amends if it is your fault. You will be able take steps to ensure that the same problem does not recur. It is also important that you know how your individual customers prefer to be contacted. I once had a request from a client regarding the best ways to contact customers, He was concerned that calling people may be intrusive and they may not be comfortable telling you what they really think. As part of good customer service we need to know if the customer would they be open to a phone call or would prefer to be contacted via email, text or mail.

How customers prefer to be contacted many times has to do with their generation. Text is the favorite for Millennials and Gen Z, while some Gen X or Boomers may prefer phone, email or even mail. Step one is always to identify the wishes of individual customers. Most of your regular customers are not going to mind an occasional phone call. In fact, in many cases it is going to strengthen your relationship with these customers as you are initiating a more personal interaction. While you are on the phone and the opportunity presents itself, this is a great time to tell the customer of any exciting opportunities to purchase. Remember that these people are regular customers because they like you and your products. If a one-time customer has complained about something that went wrong and your have their phone number, pick up the phone.

In the majority of cases the customer will be pleased that you have responded so personally. It is unusual for a company to call customers these days, so calling can engender a positive response. If not send them an email or even a letter. Respond politely and quickly. Once you have the information on how they want to be contacted, make sure you have the address or phone number in order to follow up. Also get their agreement (in writing) with a follow up email that you ask them to sign and return. Your consideration for how your customers wish to be contacted will just deepen the relationship you have with them and they will appreciate the courtesy. A tip of the glass from me to you.



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