Customers Prefer To Stick – Great Customer Service Helps Them Do It


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Only 27% of UK customers would switch utilities, telephone or household services supplier if offered cash or other financial incentives. That’s according to a new report from KPMG.

So, while clearly some customers will also go for the cheapest deal, the vast majority would much prefer to stay with their existing supplier. 18% said that they would rather have the flexibility to change contract terms than switch supplier, and 16% were adamant that they ‘are not swayed by incentives’.

The survey reveals that, despite an almost constant stream of information about comparison websites or promotions that offer signing-on incentives, 41% of consumers have no intention of changing their suppliers during the next 12 months.

The report also suggests that customers in the North East are amongst the hardest to win over with gimmicks or incentives! You can’t con those Geordies and Maccams!

However, this doesn’t mean that existing providers can ‘rest on their laurels’. The survey shows that many consumers are increasingly likely to complain if problems do arise. 57% would complain to the company and 22% to the regulator and crucially, 10% will air their grievance on social media – it’s that ‘word of mouse’ thing again!

OK, the research focuses on households and utilities, but what are the lessons for businesses not in this sector? Well, here’s my take on it…… It’s a nice reminder that regardless of your market…

  • Your existing customers are a precious asset that your competitors want
  • The majority of customers do value service and would prefer to stick with you where possible
  • Make it easy for them to ‘stick’ with you – Be easy to deal with and buy from
  • Create customer delight by delivering great customer experiences… consistently
  • Create dialogue – Value their thoughts and opinions – ask for them……listen to them!
  • Don’t give them a chance to get ‘tempted’ – If there’s a problem – FIX it!
  • Do NOT take them for granted – Proactively demonstrate you care about them!

Yes, of course, your customers will look at alternatives, and some may well be ‘incentivised’ to switch. However, many don’t want to go elsewhere once they are sorted with a – these customers are a massive asset and you should do all you can to value that asset and let them know you value them.

So to all my clients, especially those in the North East – stick with me, you know I love you! (Of course, I know it takes a bit more than that, but it’s a start!)

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Andy Hanselman
Hi there! I help businesses and their people create competitive advantage by 'Thinking in 3D'! That means being 'Dramatically and Demonstrably Different'! I research, speak about, write about and work with businesses to help them maximise their sales and marketing, their customer service and their customer relationships.


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