According to the KANTAR IMRB survey commissioned by American Express, 42% consumers* are willing to pay a premium for prompt customer service. On the other hand 31% would be willing to pay for service that listens to them/acts on their feedback and 27% would be willing to pay premium for service that is available everywhere. The survey titled Decoding Customer Service for Indian customers, reveals that if premium had to be paid, 53% of respondents would pay a premium of 20%-40% in return for better customer service. At the same time 83% agreed that they would pay a premium for a brand that keeps its promise. On the other hand, 66% of consumers would discontinue using a brand or product due to poor customer service, while 71% would stop using if the quality of the product or service depreciates. This suggests that delivering excellent customer service experience along with consistent quality is imperative for any brand to retain customers.
“Trust, Security and Service are three key pillars that we focus on to build strong relationship with our customers. Our survey clearly highlights that these are the key elements in building a differentiated experience to keep consumers loyal and invested in a brand. At American Express, service is at the core of whatever we do and this is built on a foundation of trust – the trust our customers place in us,” said Manoj Adlakha, Chief Executive Officer, American Express Banking Corp., India.
The online survey, which was conducted among 1577 urban Indian customers across Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai, Pune, Kolkata and Delhi/NCR, reveals that Indian consumers give high preference to digital ways of interacting with the brands. 81% agree that they prefer to access product information digitally rather than in person or through a phone call, and 48% prefer resolving their queries onlinewhile 47% prefer resolving queries over a phone call or mobile SMS.
With social media becoming the mainstay of modern-day life, being present on social media and garnering positive traction has become a must-have for brands today.The survey substantiates this observation by revealing that 80% respondents agree that they discover and learn about brands through social media.
To be able to cater to the expectations of customers, companies must work towards reduced turnaround time, and development of multimodal touchpoints for engaging with the customers. Of the total respondents surveyed, 87% say they expect instant access to the service they have purchased or subscribed to. While talking to a customer service representative over a phone call is the most preferred mode of communication, followed by connecting through digital mediums such as email and online chat. 62% of those surveyed stated that customer service and availability of instantaneous issue resolution across multiple platforms is a must have digital feature to retain their loyalty to the brand.
Besides quick access to customer care, Indians also want their experience to be delivered in a safe and secure environment. As per the survey, 54% of total respondents want the brands to incorporate more mobile security and authentication features. Talking about future capabilities, customers would increasingly like brands to present same day delivery option to them(56%).