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40% of Online XMAS Shoppers in US Report Improved Service

Friday 23 January 2004 08:41 CET | News

Aspect Communications Corporation has revealedthe results of its annual survey of online Christmas shoppers in the United States conducted through independent firm Greenfield Online.

Now in its second year, the Aspect survey is designed to gather intelligence, uncover issues and determine new trends among online Christmas shoppers with regard to their customer service experiences. This years survey for 2003 revealed that 40 percent of respondents found their customer service experiences had greatly improved from that of 12 months ago. Another 54 percent of online shoppers responded that their customer service experiences were as good as or slightly better than their experiences the previous year. In all, more than 90 percent of survey respondents had positive customer service experiences shopping online this past Christmas season. In the survey for 2002, respondents beseeched online companies to improve their overall customer service response times and to provide better agent training in the newer contact channels, particularly e-mail. For 2003, Christmas shoppers saw a marked improvement in response times overall-and to e-mail inquiries in particular. Survey results confirmed that e-mail, equaling 70 percent of all inquiries, has cemented its place as the most popular contact channel among Christmas online shoppers by a wide margin. In terms of response times, nearly 20 percent of those surveyed reported having received responses to their customer service inquiries via e-mail in under an hour, and 53 percent received responses within the 12-hour business day. Aspects survey also revealed that 62 percent of the respondents for 2003 found it necessary to contact customer service only one or two times, with more than 90 percent of those contacts either being routine requests for more information on a product or a check-in on shipping/delivery status. 99 percent of those information requests were processed through some kind of a customer self-service system. Respondents for 2002, however, had bemoaned the lack of adequate online or voice self-service systems. The difference indicates that online retailers responded to market demand with new customer self-service functionality for the 2003 Christmas season. In summary, the survey results for 2003 strongly suggest that the online shopping experience for the majority of respondents was more positive than in past years with only a small percentage (less than 3 percent) reporting any serious problems. Moreover, an average of 53.3 percent of the survey participants also gave high marks for their conversations with live customer service agents, emphasising that the agents as a whole were polite, professional, knowledgeable and able to process their requests with a high degree of accuracy.


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Categories: Payments & Commerce | Payments General
Countries: World
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Payments & Commerce