Customers will always remain the primary focus of every business because without customers there will be no reason for a business to operate. Fast-food companies offer products which are perishable hence there is a need to retain existing customers who are loyal and frequent purchasers. The fast-food industry in South Africa is experiencing numerous market-related changes, which ranges from intense globalisation forces to heightening competition levels. Consequently, as a result of these forces, fast-food outlets in South Africa are intensifying their production and marketing strategies as a defensive way to counter the impact imposed by these environmental changes. The population for this study included all the visitors to Something Fishy, Nandos and Steers fast-food outlets in the Gauteng, Western Cape and Kwazulu-Natal provinces of South Africa as well as the managers of the different branches in the selected provinces. The sample under study was seven hundred and fifty (750) respondents. Data analysis was done by calculating averages and standard deviations, Explorative factor analysis (EFA), Cronbach Alpha-values and practical significance by means of effect sizes. All the managers included in the study admitted that they make use of the CRM concept. They implement the concept of CRM by focusing on aspects such as individual attention, ongoing marketing (promotions), a focus on staff and customers training, swift complaints handling, the provision of a friendly service, as well as the offering of the best quality services and products.
Key Words: Customer relationship management, customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, customer service, customer retention.
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