What Causes Customer Dissatisfaction and How to Fix It – A Complete Guide

What Causes Customer Dissatisfaction and How to Fix It - A Complete Guide cover

Why is customer dissatisfaction a critical factor your business must address?

Your business will not succeed if your customers are dissatisfied.

Furthermore, they’ll share their experiences online, which could further damage your reputation.

This post helps you determine the key reasons for customer dissatisfaction in your business. We’ll also learn to use in-product experiences to manage customer dissatisfaction and prevent them from putting a dent in your business.


  • Customer dissatisfaction arises due to a shortcoming of your business concerning your product or customer service.

Reasons for customer dissatisfaction:

  • Your product feels like it’s not fully developed.
  • The price is too high compared to the value it delivers.
  • The perceived value is different than the experienced value.
  • The product or its features aren’t working properly.
  • You have abysmal customer support.

How customer dissatisfaction affects your business:

  • Unhappy users leave negative comments about your brand in public.
  • They also have the highest likelihood of leaving and unsubscribing from your product.

Types of dissatisfied customers:

  • An angry customer is convinced that your company neither cares nor listens to them.
  • An unhappy customer feels that your product failed to meet their expectations.
  • A demanding customer thinks highly of them and wants you to treat them differently.

Ways to handle dissatisfied customers:

Try Userpilot and Improve Customer Satisfaction


What is customer dissatisfaction?

Customer dissatisfaction occurs when your product does not meet user expectations.

Their discontent with your company can propel them to criticize your brand publicly, leading to a loss of trust from your audience towards your business.

The dissatisfaction can worsen if your organization doesn’t address those complaints properly.

What leads to customer dissatisfaction

Different factors can lead to customer dissatisfaction – bad products, bad service, high prices, or something else.

Below are the most common reasons you may have dissatisfied customers:

Poor product quality leads to dissatisfied customers

A product is considered poor when the quality of the product doesn’t correspond to customer expectations. It can be an issue with product features not performing correctly.

For example, if a Saas product has a lot of bugs and creates friction when users are trying to achieve a goal, then it will leave customers dissatisfied.

Dissatisfaction due to the product value offered and the price asked for it

Price is another factor that can cause discontent among your customers.

If your product costs more than its provided value, it will result in customer churn.

Another reason can be hidden product or service costs that were not stated clearly at the beginning of the user journey. Not announcing price changes properly is a similar issue.

The product or service fails to meet customer expectations

If your product doesn’t deliver what you promised to customers, expect them to express unhappiness towards it.

For example, you hyped your product to your audience, telling them it has powerful functionality that delivers high results. But once they got their hands on the product, it failed to meet expectations miserably.

A way of preventing customer dissatisfaction and improving retention is to deliver on the promise you made in your marketing campaigns.

Poor product usability adds friction and leads to unhappy customers

If your business is in the SaaS space, you know how important it is to have a user-friendly interface. If you don’t, you’re going to hear about it.

Customers want their software to be easy to use and intuitive. If they’re having trouble getting the hang of your product or service, they’ll express their disappointment.

Other examples of poor product usability include:

  • Too much information is on the screen, making it difficult to interact with the different elements.
  • User experience (UX) is too impersonal.
  • Lack of organization in the product’s resource center.

Poor customer service representative interactions

If your customer service agents are not meeting the needs and solving the issues of your customers promptly, this can become a trigger for customer dissatisfaction.

Below are examples of poor performance from your customer service department:

  • Using harmful and foul language around customers.
  • Transferring calls to different customer service representatives again and again.
  • Making customers wait long before they answer—if they answer at all.
  • Overall bad and unpleasant attitude towards customers.

To cut the need for customers to reach out to your support team, create chatbots or knowledge bases. They will take care of answering repetitive questions and guiding users to the correct course of action.

Create a resource center using Userpilot

What impact does customer dissatisfaction have on your business?

Customer dissatisfaction has a huge impact on your business. It affects productivity, customer loyalty, and company reputation.

Below are some examples of the impact customer dissatisfaction can have on your business:

Dissatisfied customers leave negative feedback

When customers reach out to your support team but don’t get a resolution for their issues, they will take their complaints elsewhere- mostly to the public.

These negative feedbacks factor into the growth of your SaaS company, so make sure you handle them correctly.

At the same time, negative feedback isn’t all that bad. You can use their comments to validate product issues and prioritize which problems to focus on first.

Dissatisfied customers have a higher chance of churning

Dissatisfied customers who have a negative experience with a company or its products are likely to churn if they are not satisfied with their resolution.

Companies should consider their customer service processes and make sure that they are able to address issues quickly and efficiently so that customers do not feel neglected or mistreated by their company.

Be proactive in identifying product issues to reduce customer churn. Don’t wait for customers to point them out for you.

Make your new users’ onboarding process easier and more personalized to quickly close the value gap and minimize the number of dissatisfied customers.

The explanation of a value gap
The explanation of a value gap

Your customer support team gets overloaded

Unhappy customers will let you and your customer support team know they are unhappy with your product. This means your customer support agents will get tonnes of messages and calls, making it hard for them to properly approach each customer.

This overload can result both in more dissatisfied customers and quitting employees.

Types of dissatisfied customers

A dissatisfied customer comes in many forms. Below are the most common types of dissatisfied customers you’ll deal with or are dealing with in your business:

  • Angry customers – They will go out of their way to find fault with your business and lash out at you if you don’t provide them with the solution they’re looking for in a problem.
  • Unhappy customers – They aren’t as abrasive as angry customers. But they’ll express their disappointment in your product not meeting their expectations.
  • Demanding customers – They may ask your support agents to do something that they are not authorized or otherwise able to do for them.

How to handle customer dissatisfaction and reduce potential churn

Knowing the customer types you encounter the most and what makes them tick enables you to deal with them appropriately.

This way, you can diffuse their dissatisfaction, allowing you to get back into their good graces and retain them as clients.

Below are ways to do this:

Make your customers feel appreciated

Always treat your customers as a priority. Without them, your business won’t go anywhere, much less exist.

One of the best ways of doing this is by making the onboarding process as easy as possible. Even before they start using your product, you want to guide them through its features and show them how each one works.

For example, ask them a few questions using a microsurvey. Use the information they provided to show them contextual tooltips and onboarding checklists, allowing them to use the product that suits their needs.

kontentino welcome screen
Kontentino’s welcome screen.

Your onboarding initiative shows your willingness to go out of your way and accommodate them, which is something that will increase the level of customer satisfaction.

Personalize customer experience based on customer data

Asking users to fill out a microsurvey is one way towards product personalization.

By collecting data about a customer, you can create better customer experiences that are tailor-made to their preference.

welcome survey
Create a welcome survey using Userpilot

You can also use microsurveys throughout the user journey. For example, ask users to answer customer satisfaction surveys after using your product for days or weeks, if not months.

Their answers provide you with insights regarding their sentiments about your product. Use the most common feedback customers provided to make the necessary improvements on your product for better personalization.

Build Engaging Product Experiences and Improve Customer Satisfaction


Guide new users to experience value faster

By tailoring your customer’s onboarding experience, you can shorten their time to value (TTV).

Creating in-app guidance will help your users get a hold of your product’s different features. Thus customers can go straight to using your app, allowing them to achieve their goals quickly.

Use interactive walkthroughs and demo content to help take away the guesswork from using your product and proceed to make the product work for them.

rocketbot interactive walkthrough
RocketBot’s interactive walkthrough.

Constantly measure customer satisfaction level

Measuring your customers’ sentiment towards your product gives you ideas on what it takes to turn their frown upside down.

Different customer satisfaction surveys provide quantitative data on what users think about your product.

onboarding customer satisfaction surveys
Create in-app surveys to measure customer satisfaction after onboarding

To help you get more detailed feedback from customers, follow it up with an open-ended question.

Getting qualitative data this way provides you with better information on how to improve your product’s customer experience.

Measure customer loyalty with a Net Promoter System

Net Promoter Score (NPS) helps measure customer satisfaction levels. It asks how likely customers are to refer your product to their friends and colleagues on a scale from 0 (highly unlikely) to 10 (most likely).

Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey
Net Promoter Score (NPS) survey

Promoters (customers who gave a score between 9 and 10) will go out of their way to promote it to their colleagues.

Detractors or customers who gave your product a score of 6 or below are your dissatisfied customers who need nurturing.

You can reach out to your detractors to collect feedback and improve their satisfaction with your product.

Using their feedback, you get to know how to turn detractors into promoters and grow your business.

Collect feedback and identify dissatisfied customers

You can use customer service software that enables in-app feedback forms. That way, you can collect quantitative and qualitative data to analyze customer sentiment throughout the customer journey.

Customer survey templates in Userpilot
Customer survey templates in Userpilot

You can analyze the collected data from feedback responses and make the appropriate changes to your product.

Create segments based on customer feedback

Identifying product user segments is another approach to managing customer dissatisfaction.

For example, find out who your inactive users are from your product analytics. These customers are likely not to see your product’s value, causing them to stop using it altogether.

From here, reach out and offer a personal demo to them or help.

Trigger live demo offer using customer feedback data
Trigger live demo offer using customer feedback data

Create segments based on specific feedback or NPS scores so you can reach the right audience with the right message.

Enhance customer support with self-service in-app help

Customers prefer figuring out how to use your product on their own.

And even if they have any questions, they are more likely to use a self-service in-app help than connect with your support team right away.

So make sure your in-app resource center is full of helpful content.

Implement an in app knowledge base with Userpilot
Implement an in app knowledge base with Userpilot

You can also use chatbots to provide omnichannel support and personalized customer interactions at 24/7 availability. Use them to give customers better control over how to engage with your product.

Be proactive and reach out to your customers before they churn

As mentioned, you don’t want to wait for customers to experience issues before addressing them.

By taking a proactive stance, you improve customer experiences and prevent customer churn.

For instance, tooltips allow you to properly introduce your product’s new features to customers so they can use them from the get-go.

Tooltip example from Userpilot

Improve customer satisfaction by closing the value gap

The value gap refers to the distance between a customer’s expectations and the product’s real delivered value.

Your goal is to close the gap and eliminate dissatisfaction by understanding users’ needs.

For example, guidance like onboarding checklists helps prompt new customers to take action and reach the activation point.

onboarding checklist with Userpilot
Build an onboarding checklist with Userpilot

You can then track activation goals and feature usage to identify the gaps or find a better way to communicate their value to customers.

Give quick and thorough answers to customer questions and complaints

You don’t want your customers to feel ignored or unheard by your company.

Consequently, if your customer support doesn’t respond to them over time, they will feel unsatisfied.

Aside from promptness, another customer service commandment is to give your responses a personal touch.

For example, you use customer feedback and behavioral data as input to trigger in-app personalized responses. This is not just to resolve issues promptly but also to create a positive customer experience that fosters loyalty and satisfaction.

in-app personalized responses
Example of in-app personalized responses built with Userpilot

Always respond to negative feedback

Building trust with potential customers is dependent on how your brand handles criticism.

So, always respond kindly to negative comments from dissatisfied customers. Use this as an opportunity to learn more about your product and how to make it better.

How to properly respond to a negative comment.

Showing genuine remorse and effort to reconcile with customers will show others that you have their best interest in mind.


Customer dissatisfaction is bound to happen in your business, whether you like it or not. It’s just a matter of how you plan on preventing customer churn.

By putting customers first by using in-app feedback surveys and providing them with personalized support, you should be able to get back in their good graces.

Want to build product experiences code-free? Book a demo call with our team and get started!

Try Userpilot and Improve Customer Satisfaction


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