Factors Determining Customer Satisfaction
- Complaint and suggestion systems: A customer-centered organization makes it easy for customers to register suggestions and complaints. Some customer-centered companies are: P&G, General Electric, Whirlpool, etc. They establish hot lines with toll-free numbers. Companies are also using websites an e-mail for quick, two way communications.
- Customer satisfaction survey: Studies show that although customers are dissatisfied with one out of every four purchases, less than 5 percent will complain. Most customers will buy less or switch suppliers. Responsive companies measure customer satisfaction data, it is also useful to ask additional questions to measure repurchase intention and to measure the likelihood or willingness to recommend the company and brand to others.
- Ghost shopping: Companies can hire people to pose as potential buyers to report on strong and weak points experienced in buying the company's and competitor's products. These mystery shoppers can even test how the company's sales personnel handle various situations. Managers themselves should leave their offices from time to time, enter company and competitor sales situations where they are unknown, and experience firsthand the treatment they receive. A variant of this is for managers to phone their own company with questions and complaints to see how the calls are handled.
- Lost customer analysis: Companies should contact customers who have stopped buying or who have switched to another supplier to learn why this happened. Not only is it important to conduct exit interviews when customers first stop buying; it is also necessary to monitor the customer loss rate.