“Always keep in mind the old retail adage: Customers remember the service a lot longer than they remember the price.”
- Lauren Freedman, President of the E-tailing Group
With digital solutions thriving, your customers have unprecedented power. The tech industry — whether intended or unintended — has allowed the rise in expectations, with the customer sitting squarely at the wheel.
Customers have ubiquitous access to many options. They can easily find a different brand. They can research companies that offer the best service, compare reviews, or follow social recommendations from friends and influencers. This "control" puts enormous pressure on companies to meet and exceed customer expectations.
90% of Americans use customer service as a factor in deciding whether to do business with a brand. (1)
What do customers expect? A few important offerings:
Over 65% of customers feel that valuing their time is the most important thing a company can do to provide a positive customer experience (2). Response times and resolution speed are at the heart of this need. Customers on average are willing to wait 45 seconds via live chat (3). And 57% of customers believe that response times should be the same on weekends as weekdays (4) — meaning that speed is always expected.
In fact, a consistent customer experience is important to 87% of consumers. (5) If customers don’t consistently get a quick response, you give them the opportunity to move on and find a brand that will.
Beyond timely responses, customers are looking to feel seen and heard. Companies who focus on a customer-centric approach find that they are 60% more profitable than companies who don’t (6). And customers are four times more likely to jump to a competitor if they don’t feel like they’re getting the personal service they expect.
Customer service is now beyond simply responding, but giving consumers an experience that feels personal.
Customers don’t have the time or desire to come back a second time. They want the right answer and full resolution the first time — also known as First Call Resolution (FCR).
A Microsoft's Global Customer Service Report revealed that when asked the most important aspect of customer service, the number one response was getting their issue resolved in the first interaction.
No matter the point in a customer's lifecycle, they want to be able to reach you — whether they’re checking out a product or following up on their order. Being available 24/7 to customers allows you to secure their trust and their business — both now and in the future.
Availability also means providing platforms that are comfortable and easy for the customer. A solid 40% of customers choose a channel based on the complexity of their issue (7).
Customer expectations are higher than ever - and they will only continue to rise; making now an unparalleled time of customer service innovation. It is necessary that businesses align their customer service operations with these innovations in order to meet the ever-rising standards customers have. By failing to do so, businesses risk losing their customer base as well as the opportunity to gain a larger one.
Want to learn more about the future of customer service and the your business needs to know to stay ahead? Download your free copy of The Future of Customer Service report now!