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New survey reveals it can take three or more interactions for customers to get an answer to a query.

09 February 2017

A new survey has revealed it can take customers three or more interactions to get an answer to a query and brands were losing business because of it.

The findings come from a report called The Big Retail and Hospitality Customer Survey carried out last year by the technology company K3 CRM. The company teamed up with Microsoft and Forrester Research to produce an Ebook advising companies on how to achieve excellent customer service.

The Ebook is now available to download

The survey was carried out among businesses in the retail and hospitality sector.

One of the solutions suggested is that companies should empower their staff to take action rather than having to constantly refer up or to different departments. It also said better use could be made of data collection to provide a more personalised customer experience. Again that knowledge should be made available to staff on the shop floor.

K3 CRM Managing Director, Andrew Bray said: “Businesses tell us their biggest worry is being able to manage customers’ expectations. Technology provides them with plenty of data, but they need to analyse that information and give better access to it to provide the best service.

“What customers want now is a more personalised experience. They expect you to know their likes and dislikes. Interestingly, fewer than one in ten use a customer relationship management system which helps them pull together information from a variety of sources. The technology can do this so why not use it?”

The Ebook provides a five step plan to help businesses. Its main suggestions include:

Understand the obstacles preventing your organisation from resolving issues on the first interaction. Are your systems disparate and out of date?

Predict what customers want before they tell you using predictive analytics solutions to create relevant cross-sell and upsell opportunities throughout the customer journey

Respond to customers in the way they have chosen to interact with you e.g. if they tweet then tweet back.

Empower staff to make decisions by giving them access to relevant data to resolve issues and personalise shopping experience.

Share sales-floor and retail execution insights to speed market response using social and mobile capabilities that foster cross-team collaboration and real-time action

The book concludes by warning retailers that in the past an unhappy customer may tell their friends and family. Now with social media they can tell the world. Get the data, analyse and use the data and surprise and delight your customer and they will keep coming back.