A customer is an individual or business that purchases goods or services from another business. By buying products or services, customers help companies generate profits, the economic fuel needed to run a thriving business. Whatever be the size or nature of the business, generating profit is one of the foremost goals of every organisation and in order to generate profit it is essential that the customers buy your products or services. Thus keeping the customers happy and satiated is the aim of every business. The way businesses treat their customers can give them a competitive edge. To understand how to better meet the needs of its customers, some businesses closely monitor their customer relationships to identify the ways to improve services and products. Customers are categorised in many ways, depending on seperate parameters.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF CUSTOMERS :
Customers can be categorised, depending on various criteria. From a sales perspective, customers can be classified into 5 types. They range from someone who is just looking and not really thinking about buying, to a person that is a life-long admirer of your brand and will always come back for more.
• Potential Customer – Potential customer is someone who is not yet your customer, but still you should give him/her the full attention. He is a lead that needs nurturing and warming up before he makes a buying decision.
• New Customer – He/She is a fresh customer who just bought something from you for the first time. You need to do everything in your power to make him a permanent one.
• Impulsive Customer – This is the type of customer that can make a buying decision in an instant, provided that the conditions are right. They don’t need much convincing to make a purchase and hence you don’t need to warm up this lead too much.
• Discount Customer – This is the type of customer that sees value in your product but is not willing to pay full price for it. They are lured by the exact condition of the deal or discount you are offering. Once the deal runs out, it is hard to retain this type of buyer.
• Loyal Customer – This type of buyers are the best for business as they keep coming back for more. Apart from having a significant impact on your revenues, these customers will act as the ambassador of your brand.
IMPORTANCE OF CUSTOMER SATISFACTION :
Customer satisfaction is very important because it provides the business owners with a metric that they can use, to manage and improve their businesses. The top reasons why customer satisfaction is so important, is discussed below :
• It is a leading indicator of consumer repurchase intention and loyalty – Customer satisfaction is undoubtedly, the best indicator of how likely a customer will make a repurchase or refer your products/ services to another potential buyer. Asking customers to rate their satisfaction on a scale of 1 to 10 is a good approach to judge customer satisfaction.
• It can give a competitive edge – In a competitive market place where businesses compete with each other for customers, customer satisfaction can play a major role in winning the loyalty of the customers in favour of the business.
• It reduces negative word of mouth and enhances goodwill – A study shows that 13% of unhappy customers tell over 20 people about their bad experience. That is indeed a lot of negative word of mouth. Customer satisfaction is thus very closely related to revenue, repeat purchase and recommendation. It creates a goodwill in the market.
• It is cheaper to retain customers than acquire new ones – As per statistics, it costs 6 to 7 times more to acquire new customers than it does to retain existing customers. Thus it is absolutely essential for a business to work towards customer satisfaction.