Does security really impact customer retention? As the manager of customer service for a market-leading security company, I can assure you it can.
We hear lots of stories in customer service. They boil down to 5 main themes. We call them the 5 P’s of security:
1. Property — Is my stuff safe here?
It’s hard to regain trust after a customer experiences theft on your watch. “More security would have cost too much” doesn’t excuse a big loss.
Transport Security Inc., a leader in cargo security solutions, cites, "Losing an existing customer because product they desired has been stolen in-transit or in-storage can be even more damaging to a retail operation." (Than the loss of the merchandise itself.)
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2. Production — What do you mean it’s going to be late?
What’s worse than the hassle of insurance claims and/or pricey repairs? Disruption of service.
Back in 2014, a reputable beer manufacturer was struggling with nightly break-ins. But the thieves weren’t stealing beer. They were taking truck batteries. This created problems for their customers. Beer wasn’t getting delivered on time. Thefts were creating hassle and disruption of service for their customers. The company’s reputation was at risk.
3. People — Are my employees safe here?
Safety is so important that it is often its own department. When your customers’ employees feel at risk at your site, they will tell their boss. Or quit if the problem isn’t dealt with. This negatively impacts your customer, which in turn, impacts you.
Several years back there was a theft ring working in the Dallas area. They targeted trucking terminals without perimeter security. Thieves gained access to the site by cutting through the chain link fence. They would attack truck drivers and drive off with their cargo.
4. Profits — Is your security problem going to affect my bottom line?
Your customers care about anything that interferes with their earning power.
Recently, a large logistics firm reached out to us for help. They had lost a big contract due to a lack of visible security.
5. Reputation — (Ok...only 4 P's and one very BIG R) — Will I stay with your company if I know you have security problems?
This list wasn’t laid out by order of importance. If it were, this one would be #1. Overlooking reputation is a costly mistake. Once tarnished, reputation is very hard to restore with your customer.
The stories shared above all have a positive ending. The same ending in fact. Each business decided to step up their security, and prevented future losses. In turn, they preserved all 4 P’s AND the big R for their clients.
Don’t allow yourself to be a cautionary tale. Consider customer retention when you think about security.