There are a lot of stats out there on the lifetime value of a client, but, truth be known, these are all just stats. You’ll never really know the true value of the prospect you angered from the get go. You may never even know that they were a prospect so they can’t even be figured into stats.
If you’re lucky, you’ll get an angry email, phone call, support ticket or confrontation so you can attempt to make it right. It is a fact that most people don’t think it’s even worth their time to complain. They’re convinced it won’t make a difference in the long run. Sadly, they are usually right.
The White House put out a study called “Consumer Complaint Handling in America.” In it, they explained there are great rewards for companies that actively seek disgruntled customers and satisfy them.
When you look at the facts such as about 65% of an average company’s income comes from repeat business and that 91% of dissatisfied customers will never again buy from the offending company and the fact that they now email and blog about their dissatisfaction, it pays to look at how your customer service is perceived by your clients.
The study says that about one in four purchases result in some type of consumer problem. Yet, nearly 70% of those experiencing a problem don’t complain.
The twist on this is that low-cost problems of non-complainers are usually the easiest for a company to resolve. If given a chance by the complainer, the business could very well have held on to their business. So, this large portion of non-complainers represents a huge lost opportunity for you as a business owner.
According to the same study, companies that actively pursue complaints and resolve them to the customer’s satisfaction can expect a return on their customer service investment of between 15% and 400%, depending on the industry.
What message should you be getting out of this study? It pays to make it easy for someone to complain and then for you to handle that complaint quickly. In this day and age, this can’t be done any easier than dedicating a place on your website where people can contact you whether through a ticket system or some other modality.
Don’t make it hard to get in contact with your company. You can do something as simple as state, “Help Us Help You! By giving your honest feedback, you help us to strive towards outstanding customer service.”
If you show customers that you appreciate their input and make it easy for them to give it, the 70% who aren’t giving their input now, may well be able to take you over the top of all of your competition. While simple, this technique works…just try it!