Beyond the Motto: Why The Customer Is NOT Always Right

Why The Customer is NOT always right

As a customer yourself, you’ve probably related to the popular phrase “the customer is always right” more than once before. Yet, while a familiar, almost unconscious saying in the business world, it’s unsurprisingly not always true. While Harry Gordon Selfridge was right that salespeople must prioritize not only the needs but the customers’ satisfaction, it’s not always possible or beneficial to business. With that said, here are 4 reasons why the customer is not always right: 

1. Lack of Expertise

They’re not the expert. You are. Only you can advise them on the best solution.

While it’s true that modern buyers are research-savvy, they don’t have the same knowledge level as many salespeople. What ends up happening is the customer misuses or breaks their products, resulting in disappointment and dissatisfaction.

In such cases, you must provide guidance and education to help the customer make an informed decision.

2. Rude Behaviour Affects Employee Morale

Occasionally, customers may exhibit abusive or inappropriate behaviour towards employees or other customers. It is unacceptable to tolerate such behaviour and prioritise such customers’ needs over the comfort and safety of others.

Disgruntled and persistently challenging customers whittle away at your employees’ morale, increase stress levels and cause your company-wide momentum to slow down.

As a result, these customers just aren’t worth the time and hassle. While it may cause a slight drop in revenue in the short term, it’s beneficial overall to your company and team in the long term.

3. Unrealistic Demands Hurt Business

Sometimes, customers may make unrealistic or impossible demands that a business cannot fulfil. In such cases, agreeing with the customer and meeting their demand is not feasible. Rather it’s better to explain the situation and find a more reasonable solution that works for everyone. positioning your employees below the customer. This ultimately gives them the upper hand, resulting in demoralised employees who think that the business values the inflow of customers’ money more.

4. You Can’t Satisfy Everyone

It’s genuinely impossible to satisfy everyone. If there isn’t a good fit between the customer and the business, it’s often better to sever ties early instead of trying to make everyone happy – which in the end won’t be possible. Because businesses usually aren’t dependent on individual buyers, spending so much time and effort into appeasing 1 unruly customer who thinks they’re always right isn’t necessary. 

Infographic on Why The Customer Is NOT Always Right

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Final Word: The Customer Is Not Always Right

Ultimately, while prioritizing the customer’s needs and satisfaction is critical to business success, the customer is not always right.

Maintaining a balance between customer satisfaction and the needs of your business, teams, and other, possibly loyal, customers is essential.

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