13 Jan, 2020

10 Customer Service Statistics You Need to Know in 2020 [Infographic]

After spending all that time and effort sourcing for the perfect dropshipping product to sell and setting up your business, your online marketing strategy is finally in place and the first sales are starting to come in. 

But before you lay back and relax, there’s one key area of your business that you still need to tackle: customer service. In this article, we’ll present to you ten customer service statistics all entrepreneurs must know when setting up their company’s customer service.

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What is Customer Service?

Before diving into the customer service statistics, we must first understand what customer service is.

In a nutshell, customer service is providing assistance and help to consumers before and after they carry out a purchase. This means it applies to prospective customers who are thinking about purchasing a product or service from you and customers who have already bought from you. 

Why is Customer Service Important?

Good customer service is important to growing your dropshipping business. As the following customer service statistics will show, the importance of customer service as not only part of your brand image, but also marketing and sales efforts, cannot be ignored.

The interconnectedness of it all means that one single poor customer service experience can result in loss of brand loyalty, customers, and ultimately, sales.

So if you’re ready, buckle up and let’s dive straight into the ten customer service statistics you need to know in 2020!

1. Customer Service Statistics: Contact Frequency

Be it by phone, live chat, social media, email, text, or other means of contact, more than six in every ten Americans reach out to customer service representatives in one form or another every month (Statista, 2018). 

Considering the main reasons consumers contact customer service: requiring more information about your product, encountering a problem with your product, having difficulties with your website, and looking for an exception from a policy, this means that consumers face issues with a product they are thinking of purchasing or are already using on a monthly basis.

If you’re running an ecommerce business, there are plenty of ways to facilitate your customers with information such as including an FAQ section, writing clear product descriptions, being specific in your terms and conditions, and so on. But given the growing demands and expectations consumers have of customer service these days, this may not be enough to provide customers with their basic needs.

2. Customer Service Influences Purchase Decisions

If you think customer service is only aimed at solving problems existing customers have with your product, here’s a statistic that proves otherwise: 84 percent of consumers consider customer service to be a key factor when deciding whether to purchase, and only three percent say it’s unimportant (Zendesk, 2019).

That means that providing good customer service starts from the prospecting stage before consumers even make a purchase. And it’s influential enough to deter them from or incentivize them to buy from you.

In fact, most consumers today view customer service to be even more important than the company’s reputation and convenience. They list it as the third-most important factor to consider, just after price and product or service offerings.

3. Brand Loyalty Depends on Customer Service

As you set up your brand’s customer service, remember the following: good customer service should continue even after the purchase has been carried out. 

Providing good customer service helps to build customers’ trust in your brand. As this next statistic will show, it is an added incentive for customers to return and key to increasing your customer’s lifetime value.

A whopping 95 percent of consumers say that customer service is important for brand loyalty (Microsoft Dynamics 365, 2018). This is so much so that more than 60 percent of consumers report having deserted a brand and switching to a rival company because of poor customer service.

Since customer retention is generally cheaper than customer acquisition, you may want to consider building top-notch customer service to entice your existing customer pool and keep them coming back. 

4. Importance of Human Touch

Despite the digital age in which we currently live, most consumers still prefer human interaction when it comes to dealing with customer service.

According to a study, 75 percent of consumers will still choose to interact with a real person even as the technology for automated solutions improves (PwC, 2018). 

So while advances in automation and technology are there for businesses to use, there should also be a human available to resolve customer service problems when needed.

And as our next statistic shows, there’s a stark difference in preferring whether the interaction with a human customer service representative is carried out live and through a screen or over a telephone call.

5. Cost of Poor Customer Service

If the question, “why is customer service important?” has ever crossed your mind as an ecommerce entrepreneur, then this following customer service statistic is one you should pay particular attention to. 

Poor customer service is like poor baseball. It lives by the mantra: three strikes and you’re out. More than nine out of ten consumers say they will stop buying from a company after three (or fewer) poor customer service experiences (HubSpot, 2019).

This reiterates the importance of customer service to the overall experience your brand offers your customers, who have no qualms switching loyalties after three, two, or even just one poor customer service experiences.

6. The Worst Aspect of Poor Customer Service

If you’re adopting the automated options available on the market, here’s perhaps one of the most important customer service statistics to be aware of when doing so – automated telephone systems are the bane of all customer service experiences, with more than half (56 percent) of all consumers listing it as the most frustrating part of any poor customer service experience (Zendesk, 2019).

In large part, their frustration at these automated systems stems from the difficulty they face in getting in touch with a human agent, which, as we’ve seen from a previous point, remains extremely important in the eyes of consumers.

Aside from automated telephone systems, the most disliked aspects of customer service include only being able to reach customer support at certain hours and having to repeat the same information multiple times. In fact, a survey by HubSpot shows that consumers loathe the latter so much that 62 percent of them would prefer to “hand out parking tickets.”

7. The Best Aspect of Good Customer Service

This next customer service statistic shows that when it comes to solving problems, time is of the essence. 

One-third of all consumers consider the most important aspect of good customer service experiences to be being able to get their problem solved in one single sitting regardless of the amount of time spent (Statista, 2019). 

This is an indication that consumers generally prefer to have whatever issue they’re facing resolved on the spot rather than having to get in touch again at a later time. 

And it even beats out dealing with knowledgeable customer service representatives, which relatively fewer (31 percent) global consumers say is the most important aspect of a good customer service experience.

8. Poor Customer Service Experiences Are Shared

And you’ll want to work hard to avoid even one single poor customer service experience or risk having it amplified and hurting your brand.

Word of mouth marketing is a double-edged sword. It doesn’t only have the potential to boost marketing and drive sales, it also has the capability to do the exact opposite, especially if it results from a poor customer service experience; a report shows that six out of every ten consumers share bad experiences with others (Salesforce, 2018).

And as an added incentive to invest more time and energy into customer service, the same report shows that 72 percent of customers say they share good experiences with others. So do your customer service well and you’ll be getting a good reputation boost simply by word of mouth.

9. Phones As Medium of Choice For Customer Support

Most people today prefer to send a text, email, or interact through social media when it comes to communicating with family and friends. But if there’s one sector in which this trend has yet to take hold, it’s customer service. 

A study has shown that more than three-quarters (76 percent) of all consumers prefer the traditional medium of phone calls to reach customer support representatives (CFI Group, 2019). In fact, it’s more popular than digital means such as emails, online contact forms, and social media.

Given that the younger generations are also the tech-savvier generations, one might think that such preferences are age-dependent with the younger consumers preferring automated and digital solutions. But the latest customer service statistics actually suggest otherwise. 

Though more baby boomers than Generation X, Millennials, or Generation Z phone in to reach customer support, phones are actually the preferred medium of contact across all age groups. On the other hand, social media, despite its pervasiveness in today’s society, remains the least favorite option for all consumers. 

10. Consumers Will Pay More for Good Customer Service

If you offer good customer service, there’s more margin for profit as you can afford to raise your prices a little. Here’s a statistic to back that up: 68 percent of consumers say they are willing to fork out more for products and services from a brand that’s known to offer good customer service experiences (HubSpot, 2019).

This is to be considered alongside the growing expectations of consumers – 46 percent of consumers surveyed say they expect more from customer service than the previous year. Among their growing demands are quicker and more efficient problem resolutions, not having to repeat themselves, and a fluid process irrespective of the contact channel.

To really attend to the needs of your customers, also keep in mind common complaints such as being treated like cases instead of human beings and getting contradictory responses when dealing with different representatives. 

Conclusion

We hope that these customer service statistics have given you a better idea of its importance and how to go about implementing the best ever customer service experience for your consumers. 

Given the emphasis that consumers these days are placing on good customer service, this is certainly something your business must excel at.

If you already have customer service in place and have just been inspired to go the extra mile, take a look at some of these great customer service ideas!

Summary: Customer Service Statistics

Here’s a summary of the Customer Service Statistics you need to know in 2020:

  1. More than six in ten Americans contact customer service every month.
  2. 84 percent of consumers say customer service is a key factor in deciding whether to purchase an item.
  3. 95 percent of all consumers consider customer service to be important for brand loyalty.
  4. Despite the availability of automated solutions, three in four consumers still prefer to interact with a real person.
  5. More than nine out of ten consumers will stop buying from a company after three or fewer poor customer service experiences.
  6. More than half of consumers say automated telephone systems are the worst part of poor customer service. 
  7. One-third of customers list the most important aspect of good customer service experience as being able to resolve their problems in one sitting.
  8. Six in ten consumers say they share bad shopping experiences with others.
  9. 76 percent of consumers prefer to reach customer support via phone calls.
  10. 68 percent of consumers are willing to pay more to have better customer service experiences.

Want to Learn More?

Is there anything else you’d like to know about Customer Service Statistics and wish was included in this article? Let us know in the comments below!

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Ying Lin: Ying Lin is a journalist-turned-content marketer who is on a journey to help companies scale. She is also the co-founder of Dear Content, a content marketing boutique.