Top 5 reasons why customers walk and Top 10 tips of making them stay










Ever had the sinking feeling that you’ve done all that was expected of you to entice the customer or client to come back but they simply leave without making a purchase or don’t bother returning your call?

There are five key reasons why customers tend to walk away and not come back:

  1. They die (1%)
  2. They move (3%)
  3. They are lured by a competitor (14%)
  4. They are unhappy with the product, service or price (14%)
  5. They are unhappy with the way that they’re treated (68%).

Whilst sales and marketing professionals have possibly little influence over the first four reasons why customers do a runner, salespeople and business owners certainly have complete control over at least 68% of the customers who leave.

As such, it’s in your best interests to ensure that your sales and marketing teams are empowered to engage with customers, clients and supporters in a way that makes them feel valued, where relationships built on trust can flourish and where there’s a mutual respect and understanding that helps to keep them buying from you.

Top 10 tips to keep your customers

  1. Build trust. Everything you do should be about thinking about your reputation and everyone in your organisation has a role to play in ensuring that trust is being built with existing and prospective customers and clients. Replace the notion of “winning new sales” with “delighting more customers”. After all, it’s about them and not about you.
  2. Listen. Rather than being in ‘transmit mode’, try being in ‘receive mode’. Let them do the talking and you do the listening. It’s much more profitable.
  3. Make yourself available when they want to do business. It’s often said that you may be ready to sell, but are your customers or clients ready to buy? Think about it. You need to do business on their terms. Perhaps longer opening hours and actual people at the end of phone outside of normal working hours always goes a long way. Social media means you can always be “open for business”.
  4. Exceed expectations. It’s so competitive out there you have to go the extra mile. Sometimes it’s the little things that matter so much. Even a thank you card for purchasing a product or service which is genuine and personally signed in your own handwriting can be incredibly powerful and shows you really care.
  5. Develop a tailored or customized product and/or service. Standardisation doesn’t always work, particularly with high-end products or services. So the more you customize, the more the customer or client will be happy – and also you can charge more for it! It’s about building 1-2-1 profitable relationships that count.
  6. Make it easy to do business with you. This transcends the web site, the way products and services are packaged, even the contracts or agreements you want customers or clients to sign.
  7. Follow the rules of social etiquette on Twitter. As I discussed in my latest book, The Art of Influencing and Selling, it’s important not to over-tweet, humble-brag or shamelessly plug your product or service.
  8. Communicate in an open way. And this means not use corporate speak but the language and tone of the customer or client you want to engage with.
  9. Check body language to ensure you are consistent in words and deeds. Non-verbal communication is quite possibly the most powerful sales and marketing tool at your disposal.
  10. Resolve complaints and treat these as an opportunity to build trust. Things will always go wrong but it’s the way you deal with them that counts. Remember all it takes is one bad customer experience for ten people to know about it and they tell ten others. And this can happen extremely fast over Facebook, Twitter and other social media channels.

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