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What Customers Hate About You

Posted by on in Customer Service
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Ever wondered what the top 6 things customers hate the most?   Here they are:

1.  NOT LISTENING:  This was the most cited reason customers dislike salespeople.thumbs down  Too many salespeople are more interested in what they are saying than listening to what their customers (or prospects) are trying to tell them.  They haven't learned the art of asking questions to probe for information.   There's a saying I learned many years ago that holds true "We were given two ears and one mouth - to be used in that order".  Listen twice as much as you talk.  Time is precious and when you don't listen you actually disrespect your customer or prospect.

2.  TALKING TOO MUCH:  It's not about:  "Boy, have I got a deal for you ... blah, blah, blah, blah".  Its about "Tell me about your business, your home, your garden, your dog (whatever the subject is)," listening intently and then providing information that meets your customer's/prospect's needs.  You can talk your way into a sale and then talk your way out.  

3.  LACK OF KNOWLEDGE:  There is no excuse for not knowing your 'stuff'.   You, of all people, should know your product knowledge, information about your business/company, delivery schedules - all the nuts and bolts.  When you know your stuff, someone asks you a question and you answer.  However, when you don't know your stuff and someone asks you a question... You look unprofessional and, at the worst, lazy.


4.  LACK OF FOLLOW-UP:  Many salespeople say they will do something and fail to follow through.  This ranges from promising to get information to taking care of a problem or concern.  Many people use this as a barometer before they make a final buying decision.  
Here's how:  A potential customer asks for a particular piece of information and the salesperson promises to deliver it by a certain date.  The deadline passes and the prospect has to call and remind the salesperson.  Because the sale has not been finalised, warning signals sound in the customer's mind.  After all, if the salesperson is this slow to respond BEFORE the sale is made (the courting stage), how long will it take him to respond AFTER the sale (the marriage)?
Lack of follow up results in lost sales.  A person contacts two or three companies about a particular item or project.  All three submit a quote but only one makes the effort to follow up.  Who is more likely to get the sale?  (Source:  Kelly Robertson) Couldn't say it better myself, Debra

5.  LYING:  What's the point?  You always get caught out.  I'm always surprised at the number of salespeople who think its okay to "tweak" the truth to get the sale.  It includes:  over promising and under-delivering; incorrect information;  over-pricing, and so on.  It just makes customers highly sceptical of all salespeople and it leads to lack of referrals to that initial 'liar'.

6. REFUSAL TO TAKE 'NO' FOR AN ANSWER:   Almost everyone in sales knows the importance of persistence.  However, there is a fine line between persistence and stalking.  While you shouldn't drop your efforts after the first 'no', it is critical to recognise that you won't gain anything by pressuring people.  

Sales is an honourable profession.   Stand out from your competition by avoiding these behaviours.  If you're guilty of having done any of these in the past - let it go and make a new start.  You can start NOW!


Shopping should be a pleasure for everyone involved - customers, staff and business owners - never a chore.  I spend my time working with retail business owners - helping them love their businesses back to life!  This blog is my thoughts, ideas, tips and  musings on what I find...