Customer types can range from those who are loyal, repeat shoppers, to folks who are finicky and difficult to please. The way a buyer feels about a shopping experience is usually influenced by a number of factors, such as the quality of customer service, overall atmosphere of the store, and, most importantly, the attitudes of the sales staff, cashiers, and management. The quality of the product can also reflect on the merchant, especially if returns or exchanges are involved. If the store manager refunds money or allows merchandise exchanges without problems, the patron typically feels more positive about the experience. Regardless of the product or service a business offers, the impression that company representatives leave with the shopper often determines the customer types a business attracts — and retains.
The mainstay of any successful business is its clientele. Satisfied or happy customer types are frequently repeat shoppers. Even businesses that do not often have the opportunity to cater to the same person repeatedly fare well when clients are content with the overall shopping experience.
Since every patron has the potential to make recommendations to others, the bottom line can be affected by the satisfaction of every shopper. This is especially true for large ticket items — like real estate, automobiles, and yacht brokers — who may have many customers who are one-time shoppers. The potential for word-of-mouth referrals is staggering, particularly if buyers feel they have been treated well. Keeping customers happy, regardless of the industry, is important to the solvency of a company, and increases the likelihood of acquiring new business.
Some customers are very difficult to please, no matter what the business does to try and accommodate them. These disgruntled shoppers may demand refunds for services with little or no basis for the request. Some people are scam artists and spend a lot of time wasting a company's resources on erroneous claims and unfounded complaints for the purpose of obtaining free merchandise or services. These customer types can drain a business and the energy of the staff members who come in contact with them.
Most of the time, however, when a business is confronted with the wrath of unhappy customer types, it results from a less-than-optimum shopping experience that was not rectified in a timely manner. Shoppers who feel they are not treated appropriately can become irate and complain to upper management, and even to other customers. On some occasions, dissatisfied consumers file lawsuits or contact the media to report poor business practices, which can be detrimental to the reputation of the merchant.