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How to lose a customer: Don’t let this happen in your business

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This is a true story about how to lose a customer. I was in a store near me in southeast Michigan recently and will never go back. I was a loyal customer, until they committed these huge customer service no-nos:

How to Lose a Customer

  • They did not greet me.
  • The employee never acknowledged the other customer or me waiting in line.
  • As I waited in line for 10 minutes the store owner chatted on the phone with a friend in the back. He never acknowledged customers waiting in the long line. He failed to assist the poor lone employee working the front counter.
  • Employees never smiled, made eye contact, or said “thank you”.

86% of consumers quit doing business with a company because of a bad customer experience (source: Harris Interactive, Customer Experience Impact Report). And for every customer complaint, there are 26 other customers who have remained silent (like me!)  (source: Lee Resource Inc). (see 18 more customer service statistics at

Sadly, 81% of customers who switch companies say the company could have prevented it, according to in the graphic above. Learn more in their article, “The Insane Cost of Unhappy Customers”.

It’s easier for me to simply switch businesses than put up with this type of painful, poor customer service. The sad thing is that the owner does not even realize this is happening!

Moral of this Story: How to Lose a Customer

You build a business one customer at a time, and you go out of business one customer at a time.

Do you have stories about how to lose a customer?

Kirt Manecke is the author of the award-winning books Smile: Sell More with Amazing Customer Service, and Smile & Succeed for Teens: Must-Know People Skills for Today’s Wired World. Learn more about Kirt at his website.

Posted by Kirt Manecke | 0 Comment
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