One Year Into The Pandemic, New Survey Finds People Have Less Tolerance For Slow Customer Service, Nearly 50% Of Respondents Believe “Unusually High Call Volume” Recordings Could Be Or Definitely Is A Lie

Findings also show that more than 50% of Millennials and Gen Zers would rather get their teeth cleaned over dealing with customer service, and nearly 70% of people of all ages have abandoned a brand after a negative customer service experience

A new survey examining consumer attitudes on customer service, at a time when e-commerce traffic has significantly increased due to the coronavirus pandemic, has found people to be more intolerant and skeptical of the recorded “unusually high call volume” messages. The survey, conducted by ArenaCX, the world’s first outsourcing marketplace delivering responsive customer service to businesses, finds that nearly 50% of respondents are not entirely convinced the automated voice recordings are truthful.

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Further results revealed that more than 50% of Millennials and Gen Zers would rather get their teeth cleaned over dealing with customer service, suggesting that, among multiple generations, digital natives have the strongest aversion to customer service interactions. When faced with poor customer service, consumer frustration generally results in lost sales as another finding showed that nearly 70% of people of all ages have abandoned a brand after a negative customer experience.

The results are findings from a nationally represented survey of close to 280 participants ranging from 18-65+ years old in the U.S. who shared their experience about customer service during the Covid-19 pandemic. Respondents were asked questions about changes to personal shopping habits, observations of longer wait times on customer service calls, and attitudes on how closely tied customer service is with buying habits. Other additional survey discoveries include:

  • Consumer loss of patience: In the face of more than 80% of survey respondents stating they have experienced higher than normal wait times when put on customer service hold, almost half of those respondents refuse to continue to wait for a representative upon receiving messages of “unusually high call volume.” Every abandoned phone call is a lost brand opportunity to connect with customers in need.
  • Covid-19 has cemented online shopping behaviors: The reliance on e-commerce and on-demand services is unlikely to waver, with 64% of respondents who have been shopping more online since the start of the pandemic stating they will continue to sustain increased levels of online shopping long after the nation achieves herd immunity.
  • Pay for upgrade: 56% of respondents said that they would be willing to pay a premium price for a product if it meant a company could ensure outstanding customer support.

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“This last finding about consumer willingness to pay added fees as a guarantee to avoid bad customer support surprised me the most,” said Doc Shufelt, CEO and Co-Founder, ArenaCX. “Consumers think customer service is generally so terrible, they are willing to pay more if it ensures seamless, faster interactions. This should be a clear wake-up call to companies that the way they are delivering customer support is not working. Instead of simply relying on good management to hit high-level customer satisfaction metrics, brands must actually incorporate customer satisfaction into the heart of their operations – where performance actually affects the amount of interactions a given agent or team will handle. I’m proposing a complete overhaul of the way the customer service function is run, and clearly, there is a direct connection to increased revenue and customer retention for brands to do it.”

ArenaCX is transforming the way the customer experience is delivered. It has developed a modern approach to outsourcing, where contact center interests are aligned with brands in a performance-based marketplace. With this results-focused approach, ArenaCX aims to improve the quality of customer service for the end consumer while providing a way for businesses to engage with contact centers in a more flexible and affordable manner. ArenaCX has made it possible for its customers to easily trial and test new vendors by pre-vetting, auditing and aggregating contact centers from across the globe under one pre-negotiated master services agreement.

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