E-tailers urged to improve customer service

Retailers need to improve their online customer service, a recent survey has found.

The study, conducted on more than 2000 UK consumers and commissioned by customer experience company [24]7, found that more than one in three respondents had bought a product elsewhere as a result of bad customer service received by an online retailer.

Two in five respondents said they became frustrated when retailers did not know who they were or what their issue was, despite having previously interacted via another channel.

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The study also found that consumers expect an online retailer to know what they want based on previous contact and irrespective of which channel they use to contact the retailers – 23% said the most frustrating aspect of customer service was a retailer not having any record of their customer history and having to start a conversation afresh each time.

“Consumers now expect online retailers to know who they are, anticipate their needs and then guide them to their desired outcome, whether that’s a sale, customer service issue or something else,” said Christopher Schyma, vice president (EMEA), retail & consumer goods, [24]7.

“Retailers hold a lot of data on their customers ad need to use that in real time to deliver more intuitive customer service, allowing consumers to change channels and retain context when they do so. People have shown they are prepared to shop elsewhere if the customer experience does not meet their expectations.”

 

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