Research by Accenture’s Global Consumer Pulse has revealed that brands in the UK have to do something soon to improve customer service in digital channels and stop losing customers.
UK consumers are so unimpressed by brands' customer service in digital channels that it leads 53% of them to switch brands in at least one industry. Brands lose £116bn, each year, from people switching. That's an incredible 12% of UK consumers' annual disposable income.
78% of online shoppers often or sometimes research online before shopping in store; shoppers are generally less satisfied with online customer service (67%) than in-store (77%). Shoppers expect to be able to receive help when they are shopping online, in a similar way in which they would in store. 93% of consumers see real-time help being beneficial during their online customer journey, whether it’s before, during or after their purchase process.
Now that a large amount of commerce is going online, customer service needs to go online too. Poor customer service in digital channels is clearly a strong cause for consumers switching. 53%, that's a majority. The main problem is inconsistency across channels. Customer service in digital channels has to provide the same answers as other channels. According to Eptica, only 12% of companies give consistent answers across email, Twitter and web chat (live chat). And customer service in digital has to provide the same friendliness and professionalism.
Digital customer service should also look to go one step further on the existing standards. If we expect UK consumers to use our eCommerce stores we have to provide a simple and effective experience; customer service has to become a crucial part of that experience.
Live chat can provide the level of digital customer service which consumers desire. Customers can get problems resolved when they face them, on your website. Live chat means that customers don't have to fill in a contact form just to wait for an email reply in a couple of days and means that they don't have to make a potentially expensive phone call where they might have to be put on hold.
With 93% of consumers seeing real-time help being beneficial during their online customer journey, it's clear what consumers desire. With the correct live chat implementation and live chat agents, live chat can work seamlessly with the rest of your customer service team. Seamless integration means that consistent answers can be provided but they can be delivered in a more effective manner, and when the customer needs them.
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