Customer satisfaction is at the heart of success of any business. In fact, the long-term success of a company is generally based on the customer loyalty and good reputation that comes from offering products and services that meet consumer expectations.
However, some trains of thought have led business owners to question whether customer satisfaction depends more so on the quality or quantity offered, in terms of the products or services in question. This is a very good question that anyone could come up with an answer to, while relying too often on their own impressions, instead of facts.
To dispel the confusion, here is some information to help you determine whether it’s better to focus on quality or quantity to ensure you meet customer expectations.
Quantity vs. Quality: Which Should You Focus on to Satisfy Customers?
The first criterion to consider when trying to answer this question is the target audience. Keep in mind that the ideal solution can depend on the type of person you want as a client, as needs may differ. Here are some examples to illustrate this point:
Luxury Brands and Prestigious Companies
It’s not surprising to conclude that a person who uses the services of or looks for products from luxury brands would place a higher value on quality. In terms of the product, this would mean the manufacturing methods and materials used, while for a service, it’s a matter of having attentive staff who is very present in the moment and knows how to win the customer’s trust.
Restaurants: Criteria Based on Portion Size and Service
Several schools of thought exist regarding restaurants, and of course, customer expectations are very different depending on the type of establishment. In high-end restaurants, diners generally expect attentive service and small to medium portions of food of excellent quality. However, if it’s a fast-food restaurant, service must be efficient, and the focus is often on the amount of food on your plate, sometimes with minimal emphasis on the quality. On the other hand, recent studies have found that even in “low-end” restaurants, customer expectations are geared more and more toward quality over quantity. This is an important aspect to consider.
Customer Service: Focus on Loyalty
The customer service field is very vast and diverse. People wouldn’t expect to receive the same type of welcome in a store as they would in a hotel. Nevertheless, anyone would want the company they’ve decided to patronize to meet their expectations and needs. In the case of stores, is it better to bet on quantity through coercive sales techniques? Although this type of tactic can produce short-term results, often, it’s not the best way to establish a quality, long-term relationship.
In hotels, clients are often passing through, but loyalty is also an important factor. Whether it’s a hostel or upscale hotel, you have to find a way to provide a service reflective of the establishment’s image all the while being flexible enough to adapt to the preferences of as many visitors as possible. In this way, people will be satisfied with their stay and would want a repeat experience at the same place or another one under the same company, if there are any.
Satisfying Customers: A Balancing Act
All in all, you need to work toward creating the right balance. After carefully studying and analyzing client needs, products and services can be adjusted to ensure the former are met. There will be cases wherein the focus should be on quality, whereas for other businesses, quantity will be just as if not more important. It’s all a matter of understanding your customer base.
At a time when people have access to a multitude of choices in terms of products they buy and businesses to patronize, and can quickly go from one to another while leaving evidence of their (dis)satisfaction on the Internet, it’s all the more important to think about customer satisfaction.