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Are you losing too many customers?

Sometimes a customer will just up and leave your business, they’ll stop interacting with you and buying from you. And this is sad. But what’s the number one reason why people choose to leave one business in favour of another?

You might think it’s a massive customer service failure or they hate the product, but no! Actually, 65% of customers report that they leave one company and go to another one because of indifference.

It is a travesty that businesses are losing so many customers in this way, particularly when it is so easy to solve.

If you are losing customers it probably means that you have not done the work necessary to ensure that every new customer knows that you love them and care about them and they’re getting great service. The thing is, it’s not just re-peat sales being lost here,  it’s also the referrals and the word of mouth that brings new customers in.

But what if you had a way of wowing your new customers that creates long-term customers who buy more from you and who repeatedly refer you to more new customers?

 

What steps can you take to “wow” your customers, so they stay longer and buy more from you?

Fundamentally, you need to make sure you have a framework for customer care and all your employees understand it and “live” it. This should include a clear vision of what great customer care looks like, clearly define service levels and a description of what this means in terms of day-to-day behaviours for your people. This should be documented in a guide and supported by a practical customer care training programme, remembering that internal customers deserve the same levels of care as external customers.

Then there are some practical steps you can take to reduce lost customers, which start from the moments a new customer joins you.

  • Firstly, you need to make absolutely sure that every single brand new customer that comes into your business is blown away by the service you provide.  A good Contact Management System (CMS) system will come into its own here and will make sure that, like clockwork, all new customers experience the love. Don’t be afraid to lay it on thick in the early days.
  • Create series of automatic communications that go out to new customers:
    • They are brand new and valued customers, so you could send them a direct mail package to welcome them to the fold
    • It would make sense to send them a business related special offer.
    • You should also send them follow up emails and schedule a call to make sure that they are happy with their experience and journey with you so far
    • Additionally, you could set up a a page on your website that offers something to existing customers, such as a discount, in return for referrals.
  • Finally, it’s imperative you have an ongoing follow up, customer care strategy in place, incorporating regular Customer Satisfaction Surveys and regular reviews of the customer’s ever changing expectations and needs.

All of this is going to create long-term customers, who buy more and who repeatedly refer you to more new customers.

 

Why a customer satisfaction survey?

Ever wondered what your customers really think about your organisation? Engaging and really understanding your customers, and their experience with you, has never been more vital to the success of a business. 

A well-planned and implemented customer satisfaction survey will not only give you an insight into your most important relationships, but will promote customer loyalty and boost sales in the short-term and help you to decide how to position your people, your products and services, and your organisation, to meet the challenges of the future.

A Customer Satisfaction Survey can help you in many ways:

  • Product / Service Performance: you can survey customers who haven’t used your products or services for a while to identify what went wrong, and what your people can do to win customers back. Customer feedback can also be a good tool to measure employee performance and how each person’s role is tied to customer satisfaction.
  • Product / Service Development: you might send out a customer satisfaction survey to help inform new product or service development. Survey data can reveal what customers really want from you in the future.
  • Customer loyalty: surveys can help you identify your most loyal customers, the ones who will help you to understand exactly what you’re doing right, what to keep doing, and what to start doing. Showing customers that you’re listening goes a long way to give them confidence in you as a supplier for the future.
  • Keeping in touch: Customer satisfaction surveys are a great tool to drive regular communication between you and your customers; to ask them how they’re doing, what suggestions they might have, to find out what impact changes you have made are having and to let them know you value them.
  • Market Research: customer satisfaction surveys can help you understand your target market; find out about demographics e.g. age, gender, income, interests, aspirations and what would motivate them to buy more from you.

 

What makes a Customer Satisfaction Survey successful?

The best customer satisfactions surveys are managed well from start to finish; from planning and survey design through to implementation, analysis, reporting and making strategic improvements based on the findings.

Successful customer satisfaction surveys are underpinned by:

  • Thorough Planning, Design and Delivery: you need a clear understand of your the key goals for your customer satisfactions surveys and need to identify the questions that will provide the answers you need. You also need to determine the best question types and best methods of implementation, which could include web-based customer-managed surveys or more proactive telephone-based surveys or a combination of the two.
  • Effective and Timely Communication: a high level Customer Satisfaction Report should be produced for each survey conducted, which contains the empirical results and key messages from the survey to enable frontline managers and teams to quickly develop action plans for improvement and to address specific training and development needs.
  • Accurate Insight & Objective Analysis: a more detailed Insight and Analysis Report is key for the business,  which lays out the key findings and conclusions and recommendations on how performance can be improved in the longer term, so that decision makers can make strategic changes for the business as a whole.
  • Strategic Implementation: the findings from the survey and any recommendations that are to be implemented must by communicated effectively. Then managers and training teams should work closely with decision makers to develop and deliver strategic performance solutions focused on making the necessary improvements to the customer experience..

 

What next?

Never underestimate the importance of customer satisfaction surveys to get closer to your customers, improve their experience and to drive up loyalty and revenue. I have  to see a well designed and implemented Customer satisfaction survey that hasn’t provided a substantial return on the investment of time and money.

 

If you would like help and advice on designing and conducting your customer satisfaction survey or you would like to outsource it completely, give PDT a call on 01249 758425 or drop us a line at support@pdtmarketing.co.uk. Our marketing professionals are always ready to help!