Thoughtful Thursdays – When a good customer turns bad
I takes a long time to develop strong relationships with your customers. These are the ones who refer to you and your company as their source for the goods and services that you provide.
Today’s Thoughtful Thursdays sales topic is about recognizing the signals and not letting your good customer go bad.
Every once in a while, and it does happen, a good customer will turn bad. This does not mean moving out an order or even cancelling one, as external factors are always in play. Moving business to another supplier may not be bad customer behaviour either.
A good customer turning into a bad customer will demonstrate behaviours that have been previously agreed to such as:
- Days to pay begin to extend
- Order rates steadily decline without reason
- Prices begin to erode for smaller quantity purchases
- Calls not returned as promtly
- Competitive pressures escalate without warning
- You are overlooked for new applications
These are potential flags indicating that your business relationship weakening. They are a wake up call to find out what is going on. Has there been personnel turnover? Perhaps there are new industry trends. Has the competition upped their game?
When a solid relationship begins to deteriorate, you can rest assured that communications might have something to do with it. It might be customer to supplier, supplier to customer or both. Ignoring the situation is the worst thing you can do.
Recall that the relationship was once soild, and rebuild it.
Never rest on your laurels or take your customers for granted. People buy from people they like.
Have a question about sales? Contact Sakanashi and Associates Inc. and I will respond.
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