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The 5 Biggest Customer Service Complaints


customer service complaintsCustomer service is extremely valuable for every business (if you don’t believe us just yet, maybe you’ll listen to these guys at Harvard), so it’s important to keep your current customers happy!  Current customers that are satisfied with your products/services are much less expensive to market to and are much more likely to spend more money with your business than new customers.  So why would you spend a lot of money trying to get new customers, when you could take a fraction of the costs to give your current customers great service and keep their business?  Seems pretty straightforward to us!  Still not convinced? Check out this blog by Colin Shaw that has some great statistics on customer service and customer retention from some big name sources!

Now that you’ve definitely decided you have to make some changes to improve your customer service, let’s take a look at some of the biggest challenges that call centers face in providing high quality customer service.  There are an incredible variety of different ways that you can improve your customer service, but we’re first going to start with some of the complaints that customers have.  Here are 5 of the biggest issues that customers have with poor service, and why they are so important to the customer (our next post will focus on how to prevent these situations and handle these complaints when they occur):

1)  Long Hold Times – No one likes to wait on hold, but most people understand it for a certain length of time.  However, when hold times become too long, customers really start to get frustrated.  Unfortunately, this is also one of the most common issues that people encounter when trying to reach customer service.  Why do people care so much?  For the same reason why you care!  You don’t like waiting on hold for half an hour because you have work to do and projects to finish, and your customers do too.

2)  Unresolved Issues – Calling repeatedly for the same issue is frustrating!  So it’s understandable that unresolved issues would make the top of this list.  Oftentimes, repeat callers get different agents each time, who do not exactly know the caller’s history.  It can be really frustrating for customers if they to have to repeat the problem half a dozen times to different people and still not get any results.  If they said they had called in with the issue before and it was not resolved correctly, it can become important to find out who the previous agent was even if the customer does not remember.

3)  Several Transfers – It’s always a wonderful feeling after getting through the auto-attendant to reach a representative right away.  But wait, you didn’t get to the right person, so they transfer you to the correct department.  What does this mean?  More hold music.  But it’s not too long before you get another representative.  Nope, fooled again!  After describing more of your issue, this representative said the first person was actually the one you needed to talk to.  Back to the hold music.  Even when customer calls are answered quickly, if the call is transferred several times, it still means that your customers are waiting just as long as when they were experiencing long hold times!

4)  Unsympathetic Representatives – This is a tricky issue for all customer service representatives and managers.  You want your agents to be sympathetic to each customer’s issue, but at the same time it can be difficult to be understanding after several hours of handling a lot of (sometimes difficult!) customers.  It’s a delicate balance that your agents juggle between being sympathetic to customers that need it, and properly handling the customers that are not necessarily returning the courtesy.  While it’s understandable why some representatives struggle with this, it’s also incredibly valuable to improving your customer experience.  If your agents are polite, sympathetic and helpful to your customers, then the customer will remember the experience as a positive one and will be much more likely to do business again with you.  If not, then they may be inclined to go to one of your competitors.

Related Article: The Top 6 Contact Center Management Challenges

5)  Unwanted Marketing Calls or Pitches – So you call into customer service to get a billing issue resolved and the agent tries to sell you additional features!  How frustrating is that?!  If your customers are currently frustrated with your services, why would selling them additional features make them more happy with the customer experience?  However, sometimes it is necessary.  For example, if a customer calls in about a certain feature that their current product does not have, the agent might want to suggest an upgrade to get those features.  This can sometimes come off as being a sales pitch to some customers, so it’s important to consider how agents phrase these upgrade suggestions.

Be sure to check out how you can prevent these complaints from happening to your customer service by reading our next article here.


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