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Nearly half of UK consumers ditched business last year following poor customer service

Staff Writer |
New research from NewVoiceMedia reveals that 42 percent of UK consumers left a business last year due to poor customer service. For millennials (those aged 25-34), this increased to 53 percent.

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The survey, based on independent research among 2,011 adults from the United Kingdom¹, found that top reasons for leaving included: feeling unappreciated (36 percent), not being able to speak to a person (26 percent) and being passed around to multiple agents (25 percent).

Seven percent had such low expectations of the customer experience that they didn’t even bother contacting support about their service issue before switching companies.

63 percent of respondents said that if they felt they’d made a positive emotional connection with a customer service agent, they’d be more likely to do business with that company again.

However, on average, consumers felt emotional connections with just 13 percent of companies they’d done business with over the last year.

35 percent indicated emailing as their preferred method of communication with a business, with nearly half (48 percent) considering calls to be the quickest way of resolving an issue.

However, consumers flagged being kept on hold as the top reason (34 percent) they dislike calling companies.

Consequently, only 16 percent suggested calls were the most effective way of resolving an issue. Social media was touted as equally effective in settling customer service issues (16 percent), followed by email (12 percent).

Faced with poor customer service, 41 percent would write a complaint email/letter, 31 percent would never use the offending company again, 29 percent would change suppliers, a fifth would post an online review and a further 20 percent would complain publicly via social media. Only 15 percent would take no action.

On the contrary, if provided with good service, respondents would be more loyal (55 percent), recommend the company to others (47 percent) and use the business more frequently (26 percent).

In an era of empowered and ultra-connected consumers, being able to contact a company through any channel was rated as the top driver of feeling emotionally connected to a brand (31 percent).

This supports research from the Aberdeen Group, which found that companies that excel in engaging customers across channels can retain nearly three times as much business as those without an omni-channel strategy.

“With revenue being transferred between companies at an alarming rate, this research shows how those that compete on the basis of customer delight can drive the acquisition, retention and efficiency that make leading businesses successful”, comments Dennis Fois, CEO of NewVoiceMedia.

New research from NewVoiceMedia reveals that less than half (46 percent) of UK sales professionals made a personal or emotional connection with the majority (51 percent or more) of their prospects over the last year, despite acknowledging the impact that emotive experiences have on sales success.

NVM found that more than three-quarters (74 percent) of sales reps believe building a personal or emotional connection with a prospect increases the likelihood of them entering the sales pipeline, yet just 4 percent felt they made emotional connections with most of the prospects they talked to (at least nine out of every 10).

The biggest segment (15 percent) said they had connected personally with just three or four prospects out of every 10 they spoke to.


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