We have mentioned on this blog that it costs far more to gain a new customer than to just retain an existing one. In fact, according to this article the difference in cost to your organisation is that it is 5 to 10 times higher to get one new customer compared to just keeping one existing customer happy. That’s a big difference.
But now with so many channels allowing interaction between the customer service agents and the customer and with so many possible journeys – rather than just a fixed route to support – there are many possible ways to annoy and lose a customer.
This blog on OpenForum is an interesting summary of the six quickest ways to lose your existing customers and all of them apply to the online customer support channels:
- Sell their info; they buy a product from you and find affiliated companies endlessly spam their inbox forevermore.
- Talk politics or religion; mistakes can be easily made and offence easily caused when dropping political or religious references into a customer conversation.
- Blame them for your mistake; your firm made an error, but you try shifting blame to the customer even if the blame is 50/50.
- Suggestively sell them the wrong thing; it might look great on the business plan to cross sell other products, but if it is not appropriate then you might lose ALL business from this customer.
- Be rude; almost goes without saying, but courtesy is always essential even if the customer is rude.
- Fail to recognise them; A customer who keeps coming back to do business with you just needs a simple recognition of their loyalty. Ignore it and treat them like a first-time customer and you can lose them.
This is a great summary of some potential problems and all these points are even more critical when agents need to operate far from fixed scripts or fixed contact channels.