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The Silver Lining In Customer Complaints

July 6, 2018

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 Building Customer Relationships


What could be positive about an unhappy customer?


Consider it a second chance. Integrated marketers who monitor conversations about their business and act quickly to address customer complaints have an opportunity to turn customer frowns around.


A survey commissioned by RightNow called the Consumer Experience Impact Report indicates what consumers expect in terms of service and responsiveness, and how fast they go elsewhere when a company fails to deliver. Here are some of the key takeaways from the study.


Good Service Pays

A whopping 86 percent of respondents said they’d pay more for a better customer experience.

But if your customer doesn’t have a good experience, don’t let them go away mad! The time to address a complaint is short: half of those surveyed give a company just one week to respond to a question before they go elsewhere. And once they leave, they don’t come back: 89 percent take their business to a competitor after a bad experience.


Bad News Travels Fast

After experiencing poor service, 26 percent of consumers went and posted a negative comment on a social networking site like Facebook or Twitter.

Astonishingly, 79 percent of consumers who went online to complain about poor service had their complaints ignored! This is a missed opportunity for many businesses. For more tips on how to handle negative feedback, see our post on What To Do With A Bad Online Review.


Converting Critics

Here’s the silver lining. A simple reply can make all the difference and give your business a chance at turning a negative experience around. According the CEI report, here’s what happened when a company responded to a customer’s complaint:

Satisfaction – Of the 21 percent who got a response to their complaint, over half felt positively about the same company they were previously dissing.

Advocacy – 22 percent posted a positive comment about the organization.


Four Things Customers Want

Answers – 52 percent want easier access to customer service help and information before purchasing. Don’t hide your contact information!