Customer Loyalty

ISPs and customer service

3 minute read

I got an email from BT who provide my phone and internet about renewing my contract. Now currently my phone isn't even plugged in, but that's another story, so I don't really like having to pay line rental as it is but it seems to be perfectly legal for companies to bundle this in as a requirement. They were asking if I wanted to renew my contract with them, with what initially seemed a worse deal for the same price. I actually took screenshots of the link because I thought the poor person I would end up talking to would be oblivious to this mistake. By the time I actually investigated my contract end date (via a charming lady with a very Indian name who I won't make any presumptions about where she actually worked) they had corrected this mistake, but sure enough after being a loyal customer for 12 months I was being offered the princely reduction of … £0.00.

Maybe BT weren't aware they had competitors. Maybe they weren't aware that those competitors have price reductions for new customers. Maybe they were counting on me being extremely lazy/wealthy/stupid/all of the above. Fortunately for me only (A) applied, and I was able to search for a better deal from the comfort of my sofa. Which isn't actually that comfy at the moment, but again I digress. I wasn't going to Sky after I had left them some years ago and have no desire to pay a fortune for things I never watch. I wasn't going anywhere near Talk Talk as I have only heard complaints about them and nothing positive at all. However I had heard good things about PlusNet who did fibre. I had fibre with BT being one of the lucky people who can get this service and wasn't about to give it up with a household rammed full of online gadgets. I checked out the PlusNet cost in a trusty old Numbers spreadsheet and found that I could save just over £16 a month by switching to PlusNet. For the first six months I also got an extra £11 per month off. The only downside is that from what I could tell from online reviews is that the router wasn't great; well with the initial six month saving I could easily get a better router, and one that supports DD-WRT which I had always wanted to try out anyway. So, I signed up to PlusNet and asked BT for a MAC code. I got an email from BT, which I will quote below;

I'’ve looked at your BT account and I can see that you’re a loyal and longstanding BT customer and we’d really like you to stay with us.

For this reason I can reduce your broadband package price from £27.67 per month down to £19.65 per month. This is a fantastic saving of £96.24 over the next 12 months.

Well why on earth wasn't I offered this in the first place? By trying to save £96.24 in that first instance, it has ended up costing BT £427.68 for the year in lost business. I can only presume that someone has crunched the numbers on renewals and retentions and that I'm in the moinority. I've always been happy with the BT Service and had no problems at all with my internet and I may rue switching but the PlusNet contract is 18 months after which of course as a new customer I'll be welcomed back with all the latest deals