5 Signs Your Customer Service Might Be Lacking

5 Signs Your Customer Service Might Be Lacking 150 150 Randi Busse

Take a look at your business. Do you suspect your customer service needs improvement? If so, there’s no need to panic. If you can recognize where your organization is falling down, you can implement the necessary changes to fix things. To get you started, here are five signs that suggest your customer service might be lacking:

1. Consistent Customer Complaints (even if there are just a few)

Statistics indicate that just 4% of dissatisfied customers actually complain about a poor customer service experience.  Just because you’re not receiving many complaints doesn’t necessarily mean you are providing good service. The question is one of consistency. If you receive a consistent stream of complaints, even if the volume is relatively small, take it as a warning sign.

Also consider that complaints presented to the front-line staff may never make it to you or your management team! A complaint is a gift from a customer who doesn’t want to just leave and never come back. Treat it as such by establishing guidelines that guarantee all complaints make it to the top.  Be open to complaints and then learn from them.

2. Loss of Long-Term Customers

Long-term customers leaving on a regular basis could be an indication that you have a real problem.  Once a relationship has been developed between a company and a customer, the likelihood of retaining that customer increases. Yet when customers who would normally give you the benefit of the doubt take their business elsewhere, it’s probably due to your service or the lack thereof. Statistics show that 68% of customers stop doing business with a company because of the attitude of an employee. What kind of attitude do your employees have?

3. Few Repeat Customers

One and out is not a good business strategy.  Loyal customers do your advertising for you; they represent your largest profit potential. When customers routinely go elsewhere after their first experience with your company, you have to look for the reasons. What are they experiencing with your company? How are they being treated?  Make them feel like they are your only customer. They will come back – and tell others about you too.

4. Poor Employee Morale

If your employees are dissatisfied, your customers will be too. Unhappy employees make no effort to make customers happy. That’s just the way it is. For the record, poor employee morale is not a result of poor customer service. It is the other way around. The solution is to model the behavior you want your employees to demonstrate. Treat your employees well and you will be teaching them how to treat your customers well.

5. Employees Not Empowered to Handle Problems

Everyday customer concerns should be handled by the person serving the customer. The customer doesn’t want to wait to get issues resolved. If your employee is not empowered to make a $5.00 decision without consulting with a manager, you have a problem. Do you want to save $5.00 or save a customer? Hire employees with the right attitude who have confidence in the decisions they make. When they keep the customer in mind, they will make the right decision.

If your customer service is lacking due to any of these five issues, what are you doing about it? Ignoring the symptoms and pretending nothing is wrong isn’t going to make the problems disappear. Remember this: if you suspect your customer service is lacking, you can almost guarantee that your FORMER customers agree!

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