startling-customer-serviceIn October, with 2015 lurking just around the corner, it’s frightening to think just how much customer service and the customer experience are impacting the reputation and bottom lines of brands and organizations. While satisfying customer experiences can have scary-good results (increasing customer acquisition, retention, brand loyalty and advocacy), just a single poor customer experience can lead to the unexpected demise of even the longest customer relationship.

According to a recent Customers 2020 Report, by 2020 customer experience will overtake price and product as the key brand differentiator. Customers “will expect companies to know their individual needs and personalize the experience. Immediate resolution will not be fast enough as customers will expect companies to proactively address their current and future needs.”

With this prediction, brands and organizations should be a little scared if they haven’t already planned for improvements in customer service and engagement heading into 2015. But there’s still time…. Here are 13 startling statistics to encourage a bigger and better buy-in for customer service and customer-centric marketing initiatives:

1. Brands in the U.K. are currently losing nearly £15 billion annually due to poor customer service. ~Harris/ClickSoftware Survey

2. U.S. brands are losing approximately $41 billion each year due to poor customer service. ~NewVoiceMedia Study

3. 65% of 1,000 consumers surveyed said they’ve cut ties with a brand over a single poor customer service experience. ~ 2014 Parature State of Multichannel Customer Service Survey

4. Only 14% of respondents in a 2014 survey of CMOs rated the customer-centricity of their organization as high; and only 11% believe their customers would say the same. ~ 2014 CMO Council Mastering Adaptive Customer Engagements Report

5. More than two-thirds of 2,000 consumers who encountered a customer service/customer experience issue on a brand’s website left the site or visited a competitor. ~ 2014 IBM Digital Customer Experience Report

6. 71% of those who experience positive social care experience are likely to recommend that brand to others, compared to just 19 percent of customers that do not receive a response ~ NM Incite Social Care Survey

7. Companies delivering customer support through social media achieve superior gains – 7.5% vs. 2.9%.~ Aberdeen Group Social Customer Care Report

8. The revenue impact from a 10 percentage point improvement in a company’s customer experience score can translate into more than $1 billion. ~ Forrester Business Impact of Customer Experience

9. 58% of companies say they are just now developing a strategy for delivering an integrated customer experience; and only 8% of companies surveyed said they currently provide a ‘very integrated’ customer experience. ~Econsultancy/CACI Integrated Customer Experience Report.

10. 63% of online consumers said they were more likely to return to a website that offers live chat. ~ Forrester Making Proactive Chat Work

11. 75% of consumers think companies should make answers to all their common questions available via smartphones. ~ Synthetix; 62% of companies think mobile customer service is a competitive differentiator. ~ ICMI Mobile Customer Service Strategy Report

12. 40% of approximately 3,000 consumers in a global survey said they prefer self-service to human contact for their future contact with companies, and 70% expect a company website to include a self-service application. ~ The Real Self-Service Economy Report

13. By 2020, the customer will manage 85% of the relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a human. ~ Gartner Research

Nov. 4 Webinar Builds the Case for a 2015
Investment in Knowledge for Customer Service

In an upcoming November 4th webinar, ThinkJar Founder and Principal Esteban Kolsky will detail the importance and benefits of knowledge management for customer service.

Notes Kolsky in a new white paper, “not having access to the right information is the most critical time-waste of preparing any answer for a customer. If the information is not available quickly, it is nearly impossible to deliver against expectations.”

Senior Director Bill Patterson of Parature will explore the critical role of knowledge in self-service and consistent engagement across channels including email, chat, the web, mobile and social. Global Customer Care Manager Eric McKirdy will also join the conversation to share the brand’s incredible knowledge management for customer service success, along with proven best practices that have helped make McKirdy a customer service thought leader.

Don’t miss out on finding out if your brand’s a leader or a laggard in KM for customer service and what you can do to quickly improve your success.