In the final analysis, businesses find their success or failure with the ability to develop more and draw from customers' goodwill. During economic boom times, it's important for businesses to bank the goodwill developed with customers in preparation for the economic downturns. It is in these times when businesses must be able to rely on the goodwill of customers for a variety of reasons. In periods of economic contraction, customers are less likely and more reticent to spending money. Working the good will between businesses and customers might allow business to be facilitated during bad times. Additionally, how a business treats its customers during both periods of economic activity can be a good indicator of how things work out for the long term prospects of the business.
To illustrate, one of my best experience in customer service happened when I opened at account in a popular internet shop who guaranteed satisfaction. Granted, it is an expensive store, but they made me feel so good that I did not mind spending the money I spent and, just because of their goodwill guarantee and attention to my customer wants and needs, they will see my money again, even if the item goes on sale elsewhere.
I can describe them as a company that builds its databased on customer satisfaction BEFORE they go into business, not after. The goodwill of the client is taken into consideration in matters that more than common sense comes into play. In my case, I had purchased a lamp worth over 1,000 dollars, and somehow, it broke in one part because THEIR packaging was done wrong.
There were no questions on their part, with the exception (for thier own insurance purposes) that I send a picture of the packaging for quality assurance purposes. The lamp was replaced, and they did not lose the friendly service nor question me any further.
What do you think happened next? I felt so compelled and thakful for this service that I asked to be transfered to give kudos in the quality assurance department, AND I made a pre-order for another lamp. I will never buy anywhere else. And, the stronger the relationship is, the more the business grows.
Businesses fail if they do not obtain the goodwill of potential customers or keep the goodwill of customers they already have. For this reason, all businesses, whether they are established or new, must seek this goodwill.
If a business is just starting out, it relies on happy customers to spread the word of mouth about it. Because of this, it needs their goodwill. If it does not get this, the customers will not come back and they will not recommend the new firm to others.
If a business is established, it must maintain its position in the market. If it does not, it will go into decline, have to lay workers off, etc. Therefore, it needs to keep the goodwill of its customers so they do not abandon it and convince friends to do the same.
Customers will buy a product or service that meets their needs. Customers will seek out a product or service with which they feel good will. Good will, which can also be called a positive brand image, is desirable because it makes the next sale to a customer easier, and because the company doesn't have to market as much to the customer, more profitable.
For new companies, good will is often the best way for the company to break into the conciousness of the consumer. By providing unheard of customer service, community involvement, customized service or some other aspect of customer service, is one way a new company can break through the message clutter and get noticed.
Conversely, good will is one way an established company can prevent customers from jumping ship and going to the new brand on the block. If I have just three more purchases to make before I reach a reward level in a frequent purchaser program, or if I have a salesperson who knows what I like, or what my purchase history has been, I am much less likely to sever that relationship for a new competitor.
I hope this helps!