Study Shows Consumers Prefer to Reach Customer Service Online
Oracle today released the results of its “Consumer Views of Live Help Online 2012” report, which surveyed more than 3,000 consumers worldwide regarding their use of customer service channels including call centers, live chat, click-to-call and email.
Compared with a similar survey conducted in 2009, consumers go online more frequently, are more likely to use Live Help and have higher expectations for customer service via social media and Web sites.
Social media users expect rapid response: More than half of Twitter users worldwide expect a personal response within two hours of tweeting a question or complaint and 51 percent of Facebook users expect a same-day response to questions or complaints posted via the social media site.
As consumers spend more time online, they rely more on Live Help: Half of consumers worldwide browse and research products online daily, nearly double the number reporting daily habits in 2009. Consumer use of online customer service is also on the rise, as 50 percent of consumers use of Live Help compared with 37 percent in 2009.
In China, consumer use of online support jumps dramatically: 76 percent of Chinese consumers are online daily to browse or research products (vs. 49 percent worldwide) and 60 percent say they use Live Help to reach customer service (vs. 50 percent worldwide).
Latin American consumers are most likely to expect a social media presence: 84 percent of consumers surveyed in Mexico and Brazil use Facebook and 63 percent of those using Facebook said they expect companies to have a presence there.
Consistent with findings in 2009, Live Help remains among the three most important features consumers expect to find at a company’s Web site, along with detailed information about products and services and access to personal account information.
“As consumers frequent online sites more than ever, they expect to engage with companies’ customer service representatives while they are there,” said Mike Webster, senior vice president and general manager, Oracle Retail. “Whether the customer visits the company’s commerce site or social media page, there must be a clear link to a customer service person that is informed and able to help.”