Topline: Customer service counts

September 07, 2012  |  Chris Powell  |  Comments

Customer service has the potential to seriously undermine – and elevate – a company’s credibility among consumers according to the latest iteration of Bensimon Byrne’s ongoing Consumerology Report. The report found that customer service is a key decision point for Canadians, surpassing even brand attributes or environmental, ethical and made-in-Canada claims.

“Canadian consumers are telling us that the service proposition simply can’t be ignored,” said Jack Bensimon, president of the independent Toronto agency. “The good news is [that] a strategic investment in customer service produces a clear and direct return.”

Survey by: The Gandalf Group
Methodology: The English and French survey of 1,500 Canadians was conducted from July 26 to Aug. 7

Key findings:
• In the past year, 56% of Canadians say they have left a store or stopped using a particular brand or product because of a poor customer service experience
• Nearly half (49%) of Canadians have avoided a product or store they have never tried after hearing of a friend or family member’s poor customer service experience
• The majority (51%) of unhappy customers are likely to share a bad experience with others, but only 31% will let the service provider aware of their displeasure
• 43% of Canadians will seek out a brand because of a good review or referral
• The pharma sector has the smallest gap – 8% – between customer expectations and delivery. The widest gaps are in government (37% for federal and provincial, 35% for municipal), telecommunications (-36%), law firms (-34%) and major airlines (-31%)
• 81% of Canadians cite friendly and polite associates as the most important customer service criteria

Additional information can be found here.

Previous Consumerology articles
• Topline: Canadians divided on country’s economic health
• Health product consumers demystified in new study
• Many Canadians feels worse off than one year ago

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