Use atonement to transform and improve your customer experience

Use atonement to transform your customer experience

Very few companies set out to provide a bad customer experienceIn general, customers just expect a company to do the right thing in a timely fashion.

So what do you do when a customer does actually have a bad experience? And how do you instil an ethos of “doing the right thing” internally with your employees so they can respond to a customer in a meaningful way?

A company I was involved with some years ago created an “atonement programme”. This wasn’t anything complex, just a simple process that was put into place to deal with dissatisfied customers with the aim of winning them back with a simple gesture.

If an inconvenience was caused to a customer, a member of staff called that individual within a day, empathised and did what they could to resolve the issue. 

But it didn’t stop there. The customer was then sent a small token of “atonement” – a box of chocolates, or a bouquet of flowers with a simple statement saying sorry that they were inconvenienced.

Not surprisingly, the customer feedback we received was amazing. The fact that we took the time to fix the problem and then went that bit further to put things right between us and the consumer personalised the experience for them, made them feel valued. The knock on effect was a significant improvement in our satisfaction survey results and our level of customer retention.

This simple way of dealing with unhappy customers turned dissatisfied individuals into promoters of the company.

This initiative also had a positive effect on our employees, raising both their levels of satisfaction at work and sending a clear message that we would do the right thing for our customers, as well as for them.

Sometimes it is the little things that make the most difference. It is challenging to run a successful business in today’s economy; however, there is one key ingredient to success – having happy customers.

Feedback Ferret’s Voice of Customer solution is a tool that can really help you put a smile on customers’ faces. Find out why they’re unhappy, rectify the issues and close the loop with the customers with some form of atonement. Get in touch to find out more. 


By Nicola Douglas, Head of Sales & Marketing