Easily Identify Dissatisfied Customers

Friday, February 1, 2013 8:00:00 AM

Categories: Customer Service

By Mark Tomalonis
Advisor, WarehouseTWO


Do Increased Expectations Lead to Greater Customer Dissatisfaction?

Who waits for anything anymore? Today, a Netflix subscriber has access to thousands of movies that he can “Watch Instantly”. Anyone with an E-reader or tablet device can download a best selling book and start reading it within seconds. In ten major U. S. metropolitan areas, consumers can order any of tens of thousands of items for same day delivery, using Amazon's “Local Express Delivery” service. Providers of consumer products continue to raise the expectation of how long a customer is willing to wait for what he/she wants. This raised expectation of instant gratification increases the likelihood that behind every one of your non-scheduled, unfulfilled, open orders is a potentially dissatisfied customer.

Easily Identify Dissatisfied Customers

  You can easily identify potentially dissatisfied customers by reviewing your open orders. Using whatever report generator is available to you, identify all open line items on customer orders that meet both of these criteria:
  • open for at least nine days (factory stock should have arrived within that time)
  • set for immediate shipment upon inbound receipt (that is, exclude scheduled releases)

What You Can Do to Increase Customer Satisfaction

Consider these actions to fulfill your customers’ open orders faster.

  1. Expedite. Involve your regional factory sales representative. Pay an expedite fee, if it would make a significant difference for a significant customer. 
  2. Re-allocate from another customer’s scheduled release. And then figure out how to fulfill that scheduled release. 
  3. Convert/modify what you already have in stock.
  4. Offer a substitute to the customer.
  5. Buy the item from a peer distributor. This is the easiest, fastest way to fulfill an open backorder. This is what WarehouseTWO members do every day. 

Got a question or comment about this article?  Email me.


About the Author
After a successful career in sales and operations management in the wholesale-distribution industry, Mark Tomalonis created the inventory-pooling software system that is now WTWO, LLC, dba WarehouseTWO.  He amuses himself by writing articles, such as this one, to help manufacturers and wholesaler-distributors execute their operations better.  Mark’s articles and tips are published in WarehouseTWO’s monthly e-newsletters.  Click here to subscribe.

About WarehouseTWO
WarehouseTWO is an independent “inventory-pooling” service created exclusively for durable goods manufacturers and their authorized distributors, and for any group of durable goods “peer” wholesaler-distributors, such as members of a buying/marketing group or cooperative.  To learn how inventory-pooling with WarehouseTWO can help your business, visit the WarehouseTWO website, or email info@warehousetwo.com.