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What is Bad Customer Service? [Examples & How to Fix It]



bad customer service and how to fix it

Have you ever been lost in the frustrating world of bad customer service? And left desperately seeking a way out? 😟

The struggle is real, as statistics have shown that bad customer service costs companies around $75 billion each year.

However, You are about to be relieved, we got your back on this one. Whether you’re a customer, a professional, or anyone who’s felt the frustration of bad service, you can follow along with this post as we will discuss some of the typical examples of poor customer service and their solutions. 

🔑 Key Highlights

  • Bad customer service is characterized by unresponsiveness, indifference, and a failure to meet customer needs, leading to dissatisfaction and frustration.
  • As a result of poor customer service, customers badmouth the company to others, causing its reputation to be damaged.
  • Keeping optimistic thoughts rather than being pessimistic smoothens customer interactions.

Let’s get started! 💪

What is bad customer service?

When a business or its representatives fail to meet their customers’ needs and expectations at satisfactory levels, then the service they offer can be called bad customer service. 

This can include various things, such as interactions or experiences that make customers feel frustrated, undervalued, and less than satisfied.

Bad customer service could occur through any channel: personal meetings, phone calls, online communications, or even in-store interactions. 

what is bad customer service

Here is an example that illustrates poor customer service in more detail. Suppose a customer calls the helpline as their internet isn’t working.

They are placed on hold for a long time, and when they finally connect with the agent, they seem unhelpful and disinterested. The customer outlines the problem, but the agent gives confusing answers, and when asked for more information, the agent responds angrily. 

What causes Bad Customer Service?

The causes of Bad Customer Services are: 

  • Ineffective Leadership: Poor leadership and a lack of vision, support, and a customer-centric culture set by leaders can downgrade the overall customer service team performance. 
  • Ignoring Customer Satisfaction KPIs: Customer Satisfaction KPIs help analyze how happy your customers are and where your team is lacking. Failing to do so increases customer churn and leads to bad customer service. 
  • Employee Disengagement: If the employees themselves are unhappy, how are they supposed to keep the customers satisfied? Employees who are dissatisfied or disconnected from their work are more likely to provide poor client service. 
  • Technical Issues: Technological failures, such as website glitches or problems with communication channels, can disrupt the customer service process. This can lead the customer to be left dissatisfied or frustrated. 

Good Customer Service Vs Bad Customer Service: What is the difference?

Good customer services include timely and effective communication, a listening approach, and an empathic attitude while dealing with problems to solve them.

On the other hand, bad customer service includes poor communication, ineffective attitudes, and impatience while dealing with consumers. 

Here are some of the differences between good customer service and bad customer service. 

Good Customer ServiceBad Customer Service
Effective CommunicationProviding clear and concise information and actively listening to customers.Miscommunication, providing incomplete or unclear information, leading to misunderstandings.
Quick ResponseIgnoring or taking too long to address customer concerns, leads to frustration.Interacting with customers respectfully and professionally.
TransparencyBeing open and honest about products, services, and policies.Surprising customers with hidden fees or unclear policies. 
ProfessionalismDisplaying    impolite behavior or lacking professionalism, can drive customers awayDisplaying    impolite behavior or lacking professionalism, which can drive customers away
ConsistencyProviding a consistent level of service across all customer interactions.Inconsistency: Offering varying levels of service quality, creating confusion and dissatisfaction.

7 Examples of Bad Customer Service and their solutions

Providing bad customer service, even unknowingly, can hamper your business in various ways. While you may know many factors that cause such an experience for your customers, there are some instances you should know about. Plus, the ways to mitigate them.

how to prevent bad customer service

So, here are examples of Bad customer service and their solutions:

1. Ignoring Customer Feedback

Customers are the actual end users of your products, and they may help to tell you various issues and open up rooms for improvement through feedback. But, instead of trying to incorporate their feedback, if you turn a blind eye, it will just give an impression of bad customer support reps and service.

Although it’s not possible to work on all the customer feedback instantly, at least hearing and addressing them before response time, will work. Similarly, there are other methods you can apply to resolve this issue:

  • To know what customers suggest, you need to have a robust feedback or review system.
  • You can keep the feedback system transparent and inform your customer if you incorporate anything.
  • Analyze and monitor Customer satisfaction KPIs (Key Performance Index) promptly. 

2. Showing a Lack of Empathy     

When customers interact with employees of the customer service department of your company, they may share their problems or pain points. At that stage, employees need to listen calmly and understand what the customer is saying.

Suppose a customer calls the agent and says, “I bought this product, and it’s not what I expected. It has some defects, and I’m disappointed.”. Then the customer support agent replies, “Well, that’s not our problem. You should have read the fine print before buying. We can’t help you with that. It’s your fault.”

If the next customer service representative senses this kind of lack of empathy from employees, it may create a perception of not committing to customer care. To fix that, you can do the following:

  • Value your customers. Instead of using that unsympathetic response in the above example, you can say, “I’m sorry to hear that. I understand your frustration. Let’s work together to fix this. Could you share more details about the defects so we can find a solution for you?”
  • Set customer-centric values and principles for your company and implement a similar work environment.
  • Hire professional people to handle customers.
  • Provide appropriate training sessions for the employees.

3. Transferring Customers multiple times

If the customers have to go through multiple lines and departments just to accomplish a single task, that can be annoying. Though bigger organizations may have large-scale structures for operation, customer care should be made seamless.

Some other ways to reduce transferring customers multiple times are:

  • Communicate clearly and concisely about their needs.
  • Set up advanced routing systems.
  • Providing your frontline employees with authoritative power to make decisions, to some extent.
  • Streamline communication between your departments, and don’t compel customers to start over the conversation again.

4. Showing Rude Behavior and Pessimistic Attitude

Nobody can cope with any rude or pessimistic behavior coming, even from somebody they know. And if they feel such vibes from any employee, that would instantly put them off, leaving a negative perception of your business.

Similarly, disrespectful behavior coming from your employees can circulate a bad word of mouth for your business, amplifying the issue further. To fix this, you can focus on some of the stuff mentioned below:

  • Hire the right people, plus properly train them for the proper attitude.
  • Create a good work environment where employees don’t have to be frustrated or pessimistic.
  • Create internal feedback systems for employees and let them improve.
  • Create internal feedback systems for employees and let them improve.
👉 You May Also Like: How to Handle Angry Customer Calls in a Call Center?

5. Keeping Customers Wait for Long Times

In today’s fast-paced world, nobody has time to spend on your lengthy holds. It puts their patience to challenge. Thus, many get frustrated to continue further. Or even if they do, they may already feel dissatisfied with how it’s going.

It is really necessary to minimize any prolonged process within your operations and make it quick and efficient for customers to go through. To do so, you can follow some of these things:

  • Optimize resources (adequate staffing and proper call service) in such a way that customers don’t have to wait even during peak hours. 
  • Use chatbots or other automated services to keep them engaged.
  • Routinely monitor the customer service metrics to identify areas of improvement.

6. Failing to offer support

As we talked about using chatbots and automated services, you should keep in mind that they should provide valuable information to the customers. The barrier to entering your support channel should be low or eliminated.

Likewise, your focus should be on providing support to your customers efficiently and on time. Some other things that you should keep in mind to fix the failure to offer support are:

  • Train your employees to resolve customer problems properly.
  • Try to provide 24/7 customer service if needed.
  • Introduce reward mechanisms for good-performing employees.

7. Poor Business Communication System

From your first impression to retention value, many things depend on how effectively you can communicate with your customers.

Providing proper information, correctly responding to their queries, etc., should be prioritized by your communicators to improve the quality of your business communication system.

Besides, using advanced communication tools will also help you add value to your prevailing system. Other things to consider in fixing poor business communication systems are as follows;

  • Upgrade and use better communication tools.
  • Provide routine training for employees on communication improvement.
  • Practice and come up with proper pitches while keeping the tone of the conversation authentic.
👉 You May Also Like: Best Ways to Handle Customer Complaints in Call Center

How does Bad Customer Service affect a Business?

Bad customer service can negatively impact a business by weakening the trust and loyalty of customers. Poor customer service results in customers bad-mouthing the company to others, leading to a compromised reputation. This may prevent potential clients from interacting with the business.

Bad customer service also has long-term effects, such as low retention of customers and repeat business. Unsatisfied customers are less likely to return, and the cost of finding new ones is higher than keeping current clients. In the end, this results in less revenue generation and the overall downfall of the company. 

How to prevent bad customer service?

To prevent bad customer service, you can focus on avoiding the above-mentioned examples of bad client service along with following their solutions. Additionally, here are some more tips to prevent them from ruining your business. 

how to prevent bad customer service
  • Hire professionals or give proper training to your employees to actively listen, empathize, and respond effectively to customer concerns.
  • Make use of helpful technological tools like CRM software, cloud telephony services, chatbots, and virtual assistants. 
  • Track customer satisfaction key performance indicators to identify trends, areas for improvement, and successful practices.
  • Clearly define and communicate policies to keep consistency in service delivery and reduce future misunderstandings with the customers. 
  • Set up systems to collect customer feedback, such as customer reviews and surveys, and analyze them to find the solution to the issues. 
  • Keep customers informed about changes, delays, or issues to manage expectations and build trust.
👉 You May Also Like: How to stop losing customers and clients?

KrispCall: Transforming Bad Customer Service into Good Experiences

If you are facing some difficulties while managing your customers and their large volume of calls, you can give KrispCall a try. It is a cloud-based telephony and one of the best call center solutions in the market currently. 

As a business entrepreneur, you don’t have to worry about poor business communication systems anymore, as KrispCall stands uptime for 99.999% of the time and has every essential feature to make your talks smooth and flawless. Also, KrispCall is trusted by more than 4,500 companies and offers its service in 100+ countries

Some of the cool features of KrispCall that help to transform your bad customer service into a good one are: 

  • Auto Attendant that helps to manage high call volumes. 
  • Smart IVR (Interactive Voice Response)
  • Call forwarding and Call transferring
  • Integrations with Customer Relationship Management software like HubSpot and Zendesk. 
  • Call Monitoring and Call Reporting 

Bottom Line

Bad customer service isn’t just a one-time mistake for your business; it’s a complete domino effect, spreading customer dislike exponentially. 

To avoid that, you can follow along with this blog to explore common examples and solutions to bad customer service, like lack of empathy, negative attitude, unprofessionalism, and poor business communication systems. 

Also, don’t forget to check out KrispCall if your business is facing some hassles with your customer communication systems. Because, in this business show, happy customers are the standing ovation you want. Keep things simple; keep customers smiling.


Where can I report bad customer service?

If you want to report bad customer service:

  • Contact the company directly.
  • Use social media to share your experience.
  • Leave reviews on platforms like Google Maps. 
  • Consider filing a complaint with consumer protection agencies.
  • Utilize the Better Business Bureau if you’re in the United States.
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Dinesh Silwal

Dinesh Silwal is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of KrispCall. For the past few years, he has been advancing and innovating in the cloud telephony industry, using AI to enhance and improve telephony solutions, and driving KrispCall to the forefront of the field.

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