Businesses function to ensure “Customer Satisfaction”, but, my question is how good are “satisfied customers” to your business? If the answer is “they are satisfied and that’s a good news!” think again.
I have been meeting business owners who believe satisfied customers are an asset for them. When I ask them what is their definition of a satisfied customer? They promptly reply, “Customers who have no complaints.” Sounds fair. Who would want a business where there are no complaining customers? Everyone right? As I mentioned earlier – think again.
When customers are not complaining, it most probably means they have either lowered their expectations from you, or they are already looking at another option. Non-complaining customers would never highlight your lapses or ask you to correct them. They will just slow down and move on for want of better quality or service. When they finally move, as a business owner, you have no idea why your customers have dumped you. As a matter of fact, non-complaining customers are toxic for your business in the long run.
Your customers would be vocal of their grievances only when they know their feedback is heard and implemented. Customers stop complaining if their past complaints were either handled recklessly or was not resolved properly. Eventually, they do not bother and lose interest in your company and its goods or services. Poorly managed monopolistic markets need not worry about this phenomenon, however if you are in an extremely competitive market, it may lead to huge long-term losses.
If you have “satisfied customers” it means either you have stopped evolving, or you do not understand the customer’s pulse. It is important to introspect and understand the reasons.
Remember, when everything is going fine, something is not right.
5 Reasons Why Non-Complaining Customers Are Not Good For The Organization
According to my research, here are 5 reasons why non-complaining customers are not good for the organization:
- You are unaware of the areas for improvement: If customers do not complain, there is no way of understanding what you are lacking. This could either be because you are not listening to the customers’ complaints, or they are not voicing it to you. This eventually degrades to self-righteousness.
- You are out of the competitive race: As customers stop complaining, and you stop improving, competition takes your share of the market by improving their goods or services. You start losing your customers to the competition.
- You lack customer insights: Over time you are not in sync with the customers’ needs and don’t understand their expectations from the company. Since you do not understand customer needs, you do not have their loyalty.
- You do not know what the competitor is doing: Customer complaints often give you an insight into your competitor’s activity and what they are offering. When customers complain, they are (in a way) comparing your goods or services to your competitor. Such complains tell you what others are offering in the market. Since you do not know what your competitors are doing, you also do not know how they are doing it.
- You do not have business ideas: When the e-commerce business started flourishing, consumers often complained of longer delivery schedules. This pushed the e-commerce player to either get delivery services in-house or have a reliable partner onboard. This helped them reach and serve more customers and even earn more by charging more for customized delivery timelines. This proves that when your customers are not complaining you do not have the insight to explore new options or have new business ideas that could make you more profitable.
Changes You Make When The Customers Say, “All is Well.”
Even before you gather feedback from your current and prospective customers, you need to be clear about:
- your goal for seeking that feedback
- the process of collecting, managing the data you collect
- the different channels that works best for your goals
- the desired outcomes
- how you will communicate to the customers that you are working or have worked on their feedback
There is no point in blindly asking for feedback if you do not intend to act on it or have no clue what to do with the feedback.
This will only confuse your customer and your employees and other stakeholders.
An insight of how your customers view your company, support, product, support, is invaluable. So, you need to relook constantly at the different customer feedback channels you have at your disposal, to build a brand that keeps its promise.
The article was first posted on Linkedin