09 20 2013

09 20 2013

Study Finds Customer Service Vital to Business Success

As any small business owner knows, the customer is a top priority. Sometimes, however, it can be difficult to please a tricky customer – whether it’s a result of poor communication or bad service, companies lose business to competitors.

In tough economic times, it’s important to retain as many customers as possible, which a new study confirmed. A study conducted by Shankman Honig​ found 20 percent of regular customers left a provider after having a negative customer service experience in 2012, which can add up to massive losses for a company. Further, 55 percent of respondents said they left a service before a transaction could be completed due to poor service.

Disparity in responses

One of the most startling findings of the report was the disparity in responses between businesses and consumers. Eighty percent of companies said they believed they deliver “superior” customer service, but only 8 percent of customers reported they received superior service from those same companies.

It’s sometimes understandable why small businesses find themselves hard pressed to deliver stellar customer service, as 35 percent of respondents admitted to losing their temper with staff members or customer service representatives. This can wear down even the most polite small business owner, but if a company wants to expand its business, it’s essential to focus on delivering quality customer service, as the damage doesn’t end with one customer lost.

Of those individuals who said they had lost their temper with a business, 24 percent said they later used social media outlets to talk about their negative experiences, leading to future losses for a business. What’s worse, customers are far more likely to share their negative opinions about a company than they are positive ones, as the study found consumers on average told 24 people about bad experiences with a company. People who had positive experiences, on the other hand, were likely to tell just 15 people.

In total the losses accrued by poor customer service added up to $83 billion per year, leaving no industry exempt. The study broke down the losses even more, finding a customer would have spent an average of $289 annually with a business had they received better service from employees.

Customer service, at a price

Troubling many small business owners who might be delivering subpar customer experiences is the fact that high-quality customer service can be expensive. As businesses expand and more customers patron a service, it becomes easier for errors to be made – sometimes shipments are late, products are faulty and need to be returned or clients feel they have a hard time getting in contact with company officials. Quickly delivering products or fixing the occasional error in a product doesn’t come cheap, as improving these services often requires equipment upgrades or expensive new hires.

If a small business owner is having trouble balancing expansion with customer service, they can come to National Funding for assistance. National Funding can help an entrepreneur shore up technology assets and infrastructure with equipment financing, or can provide a small business owner with a merchant cash advance for business to help the business direct more resources to improving the quality of customer service.

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Any applications submitted electronically shall have the same force and effect as if the application bore an inked original signature(s). The above information, together with any accompanying financial statements, schedules, or other materials, is submitted for the purpose of obtaining credit and is warranted to be true, correct, and complete.

 

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To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify, and record information that identifies each person and business that seeks a business loan.  What this means for you: When you apply for a loan, we will ask for your business name, address, and Tax Identification Number.  We will also ask for your name, address, date of birth, and other information that will allow us to identify you.  We may also ask to see your driver’s license or other identifying documents.

 

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The Merchant and Owner(s)/Officer(s) identified in the application (individually, an “Applicant”) each represents, acknowledges and agrees that (1) all information and documents provided to National Funding, Inc. (“NF”) including credit card processor statements are true, accurate and complete, (2) Applicant will immediately notify NF of any change in such information or financial condition, (3) Applicant authorizes NF to disclose all information and documents that NF may obtain including credit reports to other persons or entities (collectively, “Assignees”) that may be involved with or acquire commercial loans having daily repayment features and/or Merchant Cash Advance transactions, including without limitation the application therefor (collectively, “Transactions”) and each Assignee is authorized to use such information and documents, and share such information and documents with other Assignees, in connection with potential Transactions, (4) each Assignee will rely upon the accuracy and completeness of such information and documents, (5) NF, Assignees, and each of their representatives, successors, assigns and designees (collectively, “Recipients”) are authorized to request and receive any investigative reports, credit reports, statements from creditors or financial institutions, verification of information, or any other information that a Recipient deems necessary, (6) Applicant waives and releases any claims against Recipients and any information-providers arising from any act or omission relating to the requesting, receiving or release of information, and (7) each Owner/Officer represents that he or she is authorized to sign this form on behalf of Merchant.(8) I consent to receive direct mail, faxes, and e-mails sent by National Funding and its affiliates for the purposes of transmitting account updates, requests for information and notices, and (9) this request is for business and not for consumer purposes.

 

For Equipment Services:

I hereby certify: (1) the information provided is true and correct, (2) you are hereby authorized to investigate all bank, credit, and trade references, and said references are hereby authorized to release any requested information to you or your nominee, (3) such authorization shall extend to obtaining personal credit profile in considering this application and subsequently for the purposes of update, renewal or extension of such credit or additional credit and for reviewing or collecting the resulting account, (4) this information may be transmitted by us to you and by you to underwriter(s) for the purpose of granting me credit, either electronically or manually, and that by submitting this application, I take full responsibility for transmission thereof, (5) I am over 18 years of age, (6) I acknowledge my rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, (7) I consent to receive direct mail, faxes, and e-mails sent by National Funding and its affiliates for the purposes of transmitting account updates, requests for information and notices, and (8) this request is for business and not for consumer purposes.

The Federal Equal Credit Opportunity Act prohibits creditors from discriminating against credit applicants on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status or age (provided the applicant has the capacity to enter into the binding contract); because all or part of the applicant’s income derives from any public assistance program; or because the applicant has in good faith exercised any right under the Consumer Credit Protection Act. If for any reason your application for business credit is denied, you have the right to a written statement of the specific reasons for the denial. To obtain the statement, please write to National Funding Inc., 9820 Towne Centre Drive, San Diego, California 92121.  Funding amount and credit approval is subject to a full credit profile review.