“Hate” may be a strong word, but for customers who feel wronged, it’s only a justifiable emotion. Before companies start rolling their eyes, a new report suggests there are indeed industries people despise.

The Businesses Americans Love to Hate

The Q2 2018 American Customer Satisfaction Index report highlighted some of the industries favored by consumers—and those that weren’t.

The industry with the highest weighted average in customer satisfaction was manufacturing or durable goods. Among the sectors, meanwhile, televisions and video players received the most impressive score of 83. It, therefore, surpassed the overall weighted rating of 76.9.

The government was at the opposite end of the spectrum with a score of only 70.5. But the local government segment fared better than the Internet service and subscription service providers. Both received a mark of 62.

Many factors can affect a customer’s opinion on customer service. These can include the nature of the brand, the consumer preference, and the complexity of the service. The report didn’t mention the bases for the rating.

One thing is clear, though: Poor customer service is hurtful to the business.

The Costs of Bad Customer Service

Companies such as Cask, LLC have been in the business of elevating the customer service around the country. They do so due to one reason: A bad service can be very costly. Reports suggest it can be as much as $300 billion globally.

The losses may come from:

  • Higher rates of product returns,
  • Loss of customer trust and business credibility,
  • Possible class-action lawsuits that can cost millions,
  • Penalties from the government, or
  • Lower profit margin to increase customer acquisition and enhance competitiveness in the market.

The common causes of bad customer service are not new. These can include long waiting times, inability to reach customer support, and the lack of customer service to provide a workable solution. The popularity of the Internet, though, adds more to the list. These are inaccessibility of the website, poor checkout design, and lack of protection to privacy and security.

The effects of such customer service can be so devastating that it can cause a business to shut down. But it doesn’t have to reach that point. Designing a system that seamlessly bridges the company and the consumers is one of the strategies to improve the buyer’s journey.

Process improvements and good technology can improve the overall efficiency of workflow. Depending on the industry, it can be useful to update systems or add something like a conveyor belt table to improve efficiency of a production line.

Research on Production Process

Business owners often do not have sufficient knowledge about the production processes of their end products. However, they need to have a good understanding of what they actually produce and the raw materials involved in these processes so they will be in a good position to make improvements to the overall workflow.

Data collected on raw materials can inform a business owner about how much is wasted, how much time and effort is required for each material, and what happens at each stage of a production process. This will help an owner identify areas where they can save money or reduce energy usage so they can make informed and crucial efficiency-boosting decisions.

Workflow and Process Improvements

A business owner can increase efficiency by reviewing the company’s existing workflow and updating its processes and technology.

In terms of workflow, an owner needs to ensure that the people are fit and suited to the tasks they are given. A good manager will be able to guide the company in the right direction and see that objectives are clearly defined, realistic, and safe.

It is also important to know about equipment and technology as some may be outdated and in need of an update. When used right, automation can serve as a powerful tool in increasing efficiency and reducing error rates in a production line.

Use of Technology

Technology advancement creates more jobs than it destroys. It is an exaggeration that the human workforce is easily replaceable and that machines are always the better and more efficient option. Companies need to be able to use technology in a way that enables people to become faster, more efficient, and more productive without completely reducing their need.

Business owners can boost efficiency and improve production and output by doing their research on raw materials and processes.

Have you ever wondered how some people can pass payment terminals or leave a store without paying? Thanks to new technology, payment is simply a few taps on their smartphones. Such is happening at the present because of Near Field Communication or NFC.

Before purchasing NFC tags for your business, you must first understand how it works. NFC provides wireless technology that allows users to pay by placing either a card or their smartphones within a few centimetres on a device like a terminal or another smartphone. It transmits data using electromagnetic radio fields.

Most people are only familiar with Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). It works the same way and uses the same mechanism but only within a very close range. NFC, however, provides many benefits with its contactless transactions, according to NFC Direct. For these reasons, many business owners consider investing in this technology.

Social Media Marketing

Stores that use NFC technology may utilize it further on social media platforms like Facebook. By reaching out on social media, you attract more people to your store, and the NFC tech can provide fast and easy discounts or special promotions that can motivate them to visit your store. Doing so is an effective but subtle marketing strategy.

Direct Connection with Customers

With one scan, customers can know more about the products they want to purchase. It is convenient for you, as it gives your shop the ease of having to explain all the products manually, and for the customer, who will have the information they need right at their fingertips.

Growing Trend

If you do not have it, chances are, your competitors do. If they can maximize NFC technology’s benefits and provide a more convenient experience for customers, you could be missing out. Investing in the technology levels the playing field and provides your customers with the same high-tech experience.

Utilizing NFC technology is a growing trend that is here to stay. The world continues to advance, and your business should be able to keep up. Invest in NFC technology and see how your business can benefit from the convenience it brings you and your customers.

Apps have become popular along with smartphones, which is why many businesses today take the time to develop a mobile app to appeal to their clients.

Here are some tips if you want to launch your own app:

Have it Done by Professionals

There is nothing like hiring the right people to provide you with professional mobile application development services. This is usually better than trying to create the app in-house. The App Team notes that with professionals handling the job, you can pay them on a per-project basis while you keep running your business.

Build and Launch It Right

It also helps to have a powerful social media presence even before the launch. Give your customers an idea about the release of your app several months in advance so that they will anticipate it when it finally hits the stores. To do this, you will have to bank on your current social media standing. If you do not have one yet, it’s time to build one.

Prepare Your Help Desk

All apps have might have an issue no matter how many tests you have. Make sure you have a team to man the Help-line a few days after the app goes live.

Offer Promo Codes

Provide promo codes for app purchases a few days before the launch. Incentives can be given, depending on the type of business you have. For example, buyers through your app can enjoy discounts or free delivery. A point system may be available for use in the future. You can provide updates through the app that will benefit users.

Partner Up

Partner your app with other developers or other users who match up with what you provide. You can also try partnering with social media influencers to review the app or feature it in one of their segments.

Of course, these are just some of the things to keep in mind when launching your own mobile app. Remember that it pays to check the competition so you know what features are appreciated and which ones need to be added.

Budding entrepreneurs often overlook the amount of effort that goes into starting a new venture. They are also likely to overlook crucial factors that underlie the successful nature of any newly established business venture.

Starting a business is a complex process, and many startup companies come to this realization when it is too late. Numerous success stories of startup companies can sometimes make everything seem easy, but they do not explain how curiosity and online management and bookkeeping software helps SMEs.

There are so many factors that you need to consider and work through to make your startup a success.  Here are some of these crucial factors that could make or break your startup.

Consider Your Business Skills

When you launch a new venture, you need to oversee all aspects of the business. You are the manager, salesperson, marketer, and bookkeeper all rolled into one. You need to master every aspect for smooth operations, especially when you have a small budget.

It is best to use modern computer software such as an online bookkeeping software technology to help you with some of these roles. An online bookkeeping software can help you trace your cash flow and other business transactions.

Consider Your Target Market

“Follow your passion and the money will follow,” many people often use this as a mantra for financial success. Bu technically, you make money by solving a problem or selling a product that solves the said problem.

New entrepreneurs realize too late that they have no idea how to make money from their passion. You should consider first how to turn your dream into a problem-solving money maker.  Turn your hobby into something that could serve potential clients. Otherwise, you are likely to fail in your business.

Starting a new business is not as easy as it seems, so make sure to address these factors right from the get-go.