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“Now, that place has amazing customer service”;
“They serve THE best string hoppers in town”.
I’m pretty sure you have heard these phrases in regular conversations.
“Oh! The owner of that place is so rude”;
“That place stinks!”
Remember those too? Well, all of these are simply levels of satisfaction the consumers have about those businesses. It is extremely important that you measure the level of satisfaction you deliver, and put in an effort to continuously uplift that level.
You know that today’s marketplace is an arena of thousands of established brands (not forgetting the new entrants that are mushrooming in certain markets) competing with you. “How satisfied are your customers?” could be the most important question of all.
Alright, let’s talk theory.
Imagine a business’s clientele whose level of satisfaction is going down. What would happen? Well, basically the profitability of the business will decline. This is not rocket science, as customers use your products/services to satisfy their needs. Hence, if they can’t find the satisfaction they seek, they would switch to your competitor. Unless you have a monopoly in the market, that is the sad reality – and even monopolists lose customers if they just stop buying.
Let’s say that a customer is satisfied with your brand. What would happen? First, he/she would remain loyal to your brand and will choose your brand over other brands when it comes to a purchase decision. Simply put, you will achieve brand loyalty. Keep in mind that brand loyalty is vital when it comes to prolonged success. Measuring the Net Promoter Score (NPS) is also a good way of measuring not only how loyal your customers are, but whether that loyalty is working in your favour, bringing you more new customers ready to be delighted by your service.
We all trust a known person recommending us a place to eat than an advertisement right? It is the same with almost every consumer. So, if you have built a group of people with brand loyalty, they will continue to spread brand awareness by word of mouth (and today, on their social media) through the community. Especially if you’re active on Social Media, you might have noticed that a negative comment gets more traction than a positive comment. Whether you like it or not, this is a human trait that you have to deal with, as your customers are human beings after all.
Why is it important to measure satisfaction?
Have you seen those ”How was your stay at our hotel?” forms or feedback forms given by different organizations? Yes, those are the different modes of measuring customer satisfaction. But why is this so important?
- It makes the customer feel important – When you ask your customers to rate their experience, it subtly delivers the message that you value their opinion. Also, it gives them the idea that you are ready to improve your product or service based on their recommendations. If you are a customer, what would YOU prefer? To pay for what you REALLY WANT or to pay and get what THEY THINK that you would want?
- It gives you insights on how to further develop your business – thoughtfully filled feedback forms will give you an understanding as to what customers expect from your organisation. You can use this information to identify and prioritise improvements. Many changes can be made overnight for instant improvements, and improve the customer experience. The customer is king after all.
- No one enjoys dealing with a dissatisfied customer – least of all that customer. There is a cost factor as well in responding to dissatisfied customer. Far cheaper to make sure every customer is a satisfied customer. It is up to your whole team to keep your eyes open for any points that could lead to dissatisfaction.
Now, you should have a complete understanding about why and how we should measure consumer satisfaction. This is actually a very important habit that you must develop if you want to convert your startup or small business into something more. To measure customer satisfaction, you need not use such sophisticated online forms etc. A simple “What do you think of our staff?” question would also serve the purpose. Keep in mind that the most crucial areas where you must focus on satisfaction differ from one business to another. Therefore, it is best to do some research on your business domain to identify the strongest factors that could really affect your customers’ satisfaction before tracking, measuring and making decisions.
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