Thought Leadership

The Price of Poor Customer Service

Almost Half of Consumers Won’t Hesitate to Jump Ship if Brands Don’t Deliver an Excellent Customer Service Experience.

Handwriting Smiley on the Customer – Customer Retention

Nearly one in two customers won’t hesitate to abandon a brand if a company can’t provide them with assistance in critical customer service channels, according to a new report from the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) Council.

Forty-seven percent of North American and European consumers surveyed said they would stop doing business with a brand if they reached a certain level of frustration when reaching out to a company for help.

The CMO Council study revealed consumers’ low tolerance for poor customer service and several other insights relevant to today’s omnichannel approach to engaging and supporting customers.

The researchers found that customers aren’t expecting perfection in every communication channel (phone, email, social media, webchat, forums, etc.), but do count on excellence in a narrow range of channels, including websites, email, and the availability of a phone number that will reach a knowledgeable agent immediately.

What frustrates customers? The study found that the most common frustrations are price increases on products that don’t seem to result in added values or improvements. The next most frustrating (36 percent of respondents) is sensing that the company does not value them as a customer.

And not only will nearly half of customers walk away from a brand after a poor customer service experience, but 32 percent also said they would email the company to complain, and 29 percent would tell all family and friends.

“Every customer takes a different path to their purchase, and our responsibility as brand leaders is to ensure that we are ready to greet them, not as strangers, but with empathy, value, and context they have earned as our customer,” said Jamie Anderson, Chief Marketing Officer of SAP Hybris, which partnered with the CMO Council to conduct the study. “What this research proves is that we risk our own business success if we continue to leave our customer’s voice out of our experience strategies. If we fail to deliver value, we fail to close that deal because our customer has left to do business with a competitor that has taken the time to respond, react and deliver relevance regardless of channel or location.”

The study uncovered other key points regarding the attitudes of today’s consumers:

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