There is nothing more terrifying to a company, from the smallest mom and pop startup to the largest international firm than losing customers. While new customers are great, those returning time and time again are the ones who keep the lights on and the business open. While every firm has a slightly different build, five things can make ANY company lose customers. Allow us to review those in brief and discuss simple ways you can prevent it from happening to you.
• Employees Are Not Getting the Job Done – In many cases, your customers choose to come back to a business because of the connections they make with the employees. If you have had a recent rash of employee turnover or you see little errors occurring here and there, it may be time to make a change. Great employees make for happy customers and in turn, long-term success for your company. Do what you can to make that happen!
• Not Taking Advantage of Technology – Today’s customers are comfortable doing business from computer, tablet, and smartphone. While you may or may not run your business online, there is no reason not to take advantage of technology to connect with your customers. Have you gotten active on Social Media? Do you have customer service available by email? If you are following up on customer interactions, consider both in-person offline surveys and online or app-based platforms. Those busy people who love your firm will appreciate that you go the extra mile to make staying in touch easier for them.
• You Treat New and Existing Customers Differently – Some businesses go the extra mile to gain new customers. You offer fantastic prices, additional values, and spectacular customer service. However, if you do not continue with the offerings, when the consumers get past the honeymoon period they may move on to greener pastures. While it may not be possible from a monetary standpoint to offer all the benefits that you used to lure in new customers, it can help to do something special for your loyal following. Doing this will give people a reason to stick around and choose you time and time again—instead of just once.
• The Focus is Always on Price – People like paying low prices. That makes sense. However, if you are always focusing on being the low price leader, you will always be the value choice, rather than a premium choice. Look at companies like Starbucks. They may not have the cheapest product, but they focus on quality and providing a luxurious experience. In doing this, they have created a special place in the market, and they stand out from all of the other places that just sell a cheap cup of coffee.
• Don’t Resolve Problems Smoothly – You want every transaction to go smoothly. It is crazy to think that it will always be the case. When there is a problem, your customers need to know that you will go the extra mile to resolve them. If you have a bad habit of not taking care of customer complaints and concerns properly, you will lose customers. Even if your competition doesn’t do anything different or better, it will seem worth checking out something else. Measure customer satisfaction over time and find out if you consistently satisfy those who use your product or service even when there is a concern.
Also published on Medium.