UK Consumers Are Fighting Back Against Poor Customer Service

New research from leading cloud contact centre vendor NewVoiceMedia reveals that 73 percent of UK consumers are standing up for customer service standards more than they were ten years ago. 57 percent of Brits will give a business feedback in order to let them know they are performing poorly, and 37 percent feel empowered by social media to easily share their experiences.

While the majority of consumers (64 percent) provide feedback in order to express their opinion, 12 percent regard it as an opportunity to discourage others not to use the business and four percent actively seek to damage the reputation of the company with their feedback. Interestingly, the over 55s are the most likely age range to let a company know they’re performing poorly (61 percent); but are also most likely to thank a company for their service (37 percent).

Faced with a negative experience, one in five 16 – 24 year-olds will complain in the hope of gaining compensation and six percent of this age group even give feedback in order to increase their followers or likes on social media. Around half of UK consumers offer feedback to businesses through social channels, and of those, 24 percent do so because it’s convenient, 20 percent claim it reaches many people and 16 percent believe it’s the most effective means of getting action from the business. Nearly one in ten (9%) turn to social media as it influences other people, three percent favour it as they don’t need to face anyone, and the same percentage believe there is no consequence to their complaint.

The research follows NewVoiceMedia’s serial switchers’ study, which found that half of UK consumers are taking their business elsewhere as a result of inadequate service, losing companies approximately £12 billion a year. However, organisations can potentially increase their business if they offer excellent customer service. Following a positive customer experience, 74 percent of Brits will be more loyal, 71 percent will recommend a company to others and 44 percent will use the business more frequently.

Martin Hill-Wilson, customer experience and social business strategist, comments, “Customer feedback, whether delivered privately as most respondents still do, or publicly for others to witness, should of course receive equal attention and subsequent action. But there is growing belief and some evidence that organisations become more motivated to improve their customer service when it is on show via a social network.

“As it stands today, 73 percent of UK consumers are standing up for customer service standards more than ten years ago and 39 percent have higher expectations for service, with just eight percent claiming to have lower expectations. Clearly the investment of turning customer feedback into actionable insight and sustainable service improvements is still being made. In the age of social engagement this is something all organisations should consciously prioritise”.

Jonathan Gale, CEO of NewVoiceMedia, comments, “Customer experience is the key differentiator, and by doing it well, organisations can drive the customer acquisition, retention and efficiency that make leading companies successful. Customers want personal and engaging experiences every time, through every channel; from the steps they take to interact with a company to the agents they deal with”.

Find out more by downloading Martin Hill-Wilson’s research paper, ‘Why Customers Give you Feedback’ at

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