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How poor can poor service get? How do you avoid them?

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Author: Dhivakar Aridoss

Coveo Research service relevance report shows poor customer service affects brand loyalty for 96% of customers.

Let us break this down further.

  • Customers expect the service and support agents they interact with to be consistent, accurate, and fast. The inability to provide this has been listed as the biggest stress for agents in the customer service and support function by Forbes
  • 22% of customers reported that they would abandon a brand if they had conflicting information
  • 52% of baby boomers will drop a brand if they can’t reach an agent
  • 40% of Generation Z will abandon a brand if they can’t solve it on their own
  • 76% of customers said that they would abandon a brand after three negative service experiences
  • 12% of customers would drop a brand after only one negative service experience
  • 46% of customers said they rarely or never complained about bad experiences. This means that your customers would leave, and you wouldn’t even know why they left you

When you look at this, as a customer service or support function, you will have to provide self-service capabilities for your customers to solve their challenges, while also allowing them an easy way to reach a human agent at any point in time.

Besides, you should equip the agents with the necessary tools, technology, and knowledge to deliver the relevant service experiences, customers today demand.

Despite significant advances in enterprise search, customer insight, and knowledge management, agents still struggle to quickly access the right information at the right time. They are buried in a mountain of unnecessary information – 41% of the information that the average agent receives each day is irrelevant to their job role.

Why do agents find it difficult?

Every customer journey is unique, and no agent can account for them easily with the tools and technologies available at their disposal.

Let me give you an example.

A customer calls your customer service number and asks for a service. He isn’t happy with the cost at which it was being offered and hence decides not to subscribe to the service.

Now, he visits your experience center after a few weeks for a different reason, and the agent at the retail outlet has no clue about the customer’s conversation with the customer service.

Though the service is available at a lower cost now, the person at the experience center is not aware of his needs, and hence he is not able to add value to the interaction.

Isn’t this a lost opportunity?

If the agent had a single view of the customer across all channels, then this opportunity would have been converted, resulting in customer delight.

What is the solution?

You offer something useful to your target segment, and that’s why they remain your customers. Now, you will have to figure out how to offer them better service and support.

The most important aspect of offering customer service is to have a contact center platform that provides one view of the customer across all channels. I am talking about an omnichannel experience.

For instance, I can check out your products online, then walk into your store to try them and make the purchase at the store. Alternately, I can buy your products online, and not being happy after receiving the product, I can return them at your store. All of these can happen seamlessly if you have an omnichannel infrastructure.

I am assuming that you have all the basic needs of a contact center like intelligent routing, queue management, workforce management, list management, and reporting.

Besides, you need to have intelligence and analytics that can capture the minute nuances of your customer journey.

Let me give you a few examples:

  • Your voice and text analytics can pull out frequently asked queries, which can be added to your self-service platform
  • It can raise red flags based on keywords on the quality of your offering. This will help you avoid all agent issues and customer experience escalations
  • Every agent across channels would come across at least 4 to 5 new use cases, which can be pulled together as a part of the ongoing training of agents
  • Analytics can help with sentiment analysis of customers, uncomfortable silences, and long pauses, which act as cues on the nature of customer service that you provide

Customer service is the new product, more so, in a commoditized world where all else is common between you and your competitors. Customer service is a crucial element in keeping customers happy and preserving brand loyalty.

We have had customers staying with our platform only because of the customer service that we provide them. Poor customer service should be the last reason why you should let your customers abandon you.


About the Author: Dhivakar Aridoss


With due credit to Rene Descartes, Dhivakar lives by the saying, “I Think Therefore I Am.” He believes in 80% thinking and 20% execution on anything creative. He executes the digital marketing strategies of ClearTouch on this 80-20 rule.

Besides, if you want to chat up on automobile, formula 1, Hollywood, Music, Food, Single Malts, and any conspiracy theories, Dhivakar would be all ears and is equally a great conversationist.