83% will avoid buying from a company if they experienced bad service, and will advise others too
75% prefer customer service support delivered through multiple channels, up from 60% in 2012
THE latest Avaya Asia Pacific Customer Experience Index showed that Asia Pacific consumers prefer multichannel communications in customer service, with video emerging as a new customer service channel, and social media continuing to grow and deliver great customer satisfaction scores.
Customer service remains a key influencer of brand loyalty, with 83% indicating they would avoid buying from a company, and more importantly, actively advise friends and family to do the same, if they experienced bad customer service, Avaya said in a statement.
The potential for business generation from satisfied customers is great, with 70% of customers indicating they would pay at least 10% more to a company which provides them with better service.
This is a trend which is set to continue, as the younger Generation Y segment shows even more inclination to do so than more mature consumers.
Furthermore, 75% of those surveyed also indicated a preference for multichannel communications – demonstrating that companies now more than ever must have a fully integrated end-to-end multichannel customer experience strategy.
“The importance of multichannel communication continues to grow, with the Avaya Asia Pacific Customer Experience Index results highlighting the potential and importance of newer channels including social media and video,” said Tan Meng Teck, Asia Pacific customer experience management leader at Avaya.
“While monitoring conversations and engaging customers via social media channels has become increasingly important, companies need to ensure they have the right analytics and tracking tool in place to ensure they can decipher the ‘chatter that matter.’
“Video is also clearly starting to represent a significant opportunity for customer service differentiation,” Tan added.
This is the sixth year of the Avaya Asia Pacific Customer Experience Index (formerly the ‘Avaya Asia Pacific Contact Center Consumer Index’).
In 2013, over 2,400 consumers from across the Asia Pacific region, located in Singapore, Japan, Australia, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines and India, who were recent users of contact centres, were surveyed from August to September 2013.
The study was conducted by Fifth Quadrant and sponsored by Avaya.
Social media key, especially in SEA
While in-person communication (62%) and phone conversations (75%) continue to lead in terms of interaction volumes, 2013 saw a continuous increase in preference and adoption of social media.
This was especially true in South-East Asia with Indonesia at 40% and Thailand at 54%, and almost a third of respondents in Singapore indicating usage of Facebook to contact organisations for information.
At an average of 3.9 channels used by consumers when interacting with organisations, the Avaya Asia Pacific Customer Experience Index also points to opportunities for the hospitality and tourism sector to engage customers at various touch points, with highest utilisation averaging 4.3 channels.
While the hospitality and tourism sector leads in social media adoption; the finance, banking and insurance industry (though slowest in social media) leads in the use of mobile applications.
Video, new kid on the block
Despite being a relatively new channel, with an average of 15% of users saying they have engaged in a service interaction through video in the last three months, the adoption of video chat is on the rise, especially in the retail and wholesale sector.
Indonesia (41%) and Thailand (29%) lead in the adoption of video as a customer service channel. The rate of adoption of video is expected to grow across the board in 2014 by around 14%, according to the survey.
The top uses for video in 2013 were to update customer details and to make complaints.
Crucially, 85% of those who had used video claimed they were ‘happy’ to ‘extremely happy’ with that service interaction. This further highlights the opportunity to engage customers more effectively with video.
Service levels improving
An average of three out of five customers across Asia Pacific agreed that service received from customer service centres has improved over the last 12 months, with Thailand (82%), Indonesia (79%) and Philippines (79%) making the most improvements.
What businesses can learn
Given the very evident desire among customers for multichannel communication, businesses must have the right capabilities to collaborate across platforms and agents to provide seamless, quality service regardless of contact points, Avaya said.
As the adoption of newer service channels like social media and video continues to rise, technology solutions that help manage these channels and provide customers with the seamless and ever-improving experience they demand are critical.
According to the Frost & Sullivan 2012 Asia Pacific Contact Center Market Report, the Asia Pacific contact centre industry remains the fastest growing region for contact centre services, growing at 8.4%.
Alongside fast and high growth, this presents businesses with the opportunity to take customer service to the next level – and deliver quality service at every contact, Avaya said.
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