myth buster customer experience

8 customer experience myths BUSTED!

Written by: Sonal Jaiswal | Evangelist, Customer Guru

This is the age of the customer. There are no two ways about it. With every company planning to enhance and add to their customer experience team, CEx is the arguably the Next Big Thing! The Customers Report 2020 says that by 2020, customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator.

Strangely, even with all the hype, there are still a lot of myths surrounding the customer and customer experience. In this article, we aim to bust a few of them for you!

1. Low product/service price = customer happiness

While low price is definitely an enticement, it is NOT the only factor that contributes to customer happiness. Imagine purchasing a cheap washing machine, and then facing problems with its servicing or maintenance. Companies like Apple and Mercedes are testimonies to the fact that customers are ready to pay more for good quality product or service. According to a CEI Survey, 86% of buyers will pay more for a better customer experience, but only 1% of customers feel that vendors consistently meet their expectations.

2. Less complaints = happy customers

Nope! Not all all. According to a White House Office for Consumer Affairs report, “For every one customer complaint received by a company, 26 customers do not articulate their concerns.”

On an average, it is said that 70-90% of the customers don’t even complain. They just retell their experience to their near and dear ones, and we all know what that does to business.

Reach out to as many of your customers as possible, and that is when you will get an accurate picture of the customers’ experience.

3. Under-promise and over deliver = exceeds customers’ expectation

That could be a great strategy to please your boss, but it certainly falls flat when it comes to customers. For some reason, customers know when they come across such situations. It has been observed that some airlines quote a longer travel time in their schedule so that, even if they got delayed, they would be before time! Such patterns are easy to catch and not just mars customer experience but also ingrains distrust.

4. Marketing + Advertising Budget should be > Customer Service Budget

Companies pump money into marketing and advertising to acquire new customers and build a brand image. However, customer service is treated just as a cost centre – cut down the costs, service will take care of itself. Think about it, do you care less about a relationship once it is established?

5. Same resolution works for all customers

All customers don’t fit into the same mould. While one customer will be happy with a solution to his problem, the other won’t budge without a refund and a third will do with a sincere apology. It is therefore of utmost importance to contextualise the way customer issues are addressed and in turn the customer experience.

6. Acquiring new customers is easier and better than keeping old ones

Think again! The White House Office for Consumer Affairs says that it is 6-7 times more costly to attract a new customer than it is to retain an existing customer. Customer loyalty, while difficult to acquire and sustain, costs you lesser than customer acquisition.

Leading on the Edge of Chaos by Emmet Murphy and Mark Murphy says that a 2% increase in customer retention has the same effect as decreasing costs by 10%.

7. Customer Feedback once a year is enough

Every year, companies conduct a massive customer feedback program and chalk out a plan to improve customer experience. The intent is right, but the method will never get them to delivering great customer experience. Taking customer feedback and acting on their issues regularly and consistently is the surest way to improving customer experience.

8. Customer Experience depends on only customer-facing employees

The biggest hurdle in getting customer issues resolved is the internal struggle of customer-facing employees to get other departments to act on those issues. Believing that customer facing teams will deliver the customer experience goal a company aspires for is a myth, the only way great customer experience can be delivered is when all departments are aligned with the vision.

Are there other myths that we have not busted? Please let us know! Would love to hear your feedback on the same.

  • Love, love this list of customer service myths. Unfortunately many of these are held on to as if they are gospel. Thanks for an informative post.

    • Vivek Jaiswal

      Thanks for your encouraging words! Glad you liked it.

  • Ann Chaney

    Enjoyed the article. Definetly forwarding it.

  • Brandon

    Your segment on “Acquiring new customers is easier and better than keeping old ones” is somewhat misrepresentative. Based on your supporting statement, I’d amend the “myth” to read “Acquiring new customers is more cost-effective than keeping old ones”. Easier and better are subjective terms that haven’t necessarily been quantified. The two terms also can’t be combined…as they have different underlying meanings. It’s also important to consider that your current customer base may not be good/high value customers…in the sense that they could be likely to defect if a better product or price point is offered by a competitor. If that’s the case, despite the higher cost implications, it’d be more appropriate to focus on acquiring new customers.