How do you know if your customers are happy? More importantly, how do you know when they are upset? Research shows that happy customers will share their experience with five others, while unhappy customers will tell 10 others.
If that unhappy customer is a savvy social media user, they are probably reaching more than 10 people. By leaving a review of your business on consumer review websites such as Google, Houzz, Yelp, or Angie’s List. (what about those star-ratings on Yelp/Google?) It could be helping or hurting your business more than you think. A one-star increase among reviews on Yelp led to a 5 to 9 percent growth in revenue, according to a Harvard Business School case study. The vast majority of people are looking at reviews prior to choosing a new business. In fact, 92 percent of Internet users are reading product reviews and 89 percent of them say reviews influence their decisions..
Why are customers venting on social media? Most people voice their frustrations directly to the businesses first, but turn to social media when they are unsatisfied with the business’ response. A lack of responsiveness from the company is usually the reason why disgruntled customers take their frustrations to social channels.
How can your business better manage your customer complaints? Having a social presence is simply not enough. You need to be aware of what is being said about your business, and responding to customers’ feedback online and offline. In order to listen to your customers, you have to be where they are…
When customers leave negative reviews, businesses should respond within 24 hours to show potential customers that the business takes feedback seriously. Imagine the impact of replying minutes after an unhappy customer posts something online? Your customers (and future customers) will know that you are listening to them, but more importantly, that you care!
Would you rather have customers post something negative online than have them tell 10 people bad things about the company? If someone is complaining about your company or product online they are basically giving you an opportunity to address the situation.
Every business is going to disappoint customers sometimes, but the difference between winning and losing is how businesses respond and provide exceptional customer service. While research shows that unhappy customers will tell 10 others about their negative experience, when companies address the problem head on, the negative experience can be reversed and benefit the business. When you promptly respond to a customer complaint and fix the problem, that customer will tell as many as 15 to 20 people about your exceptional customer service.