Coveo (credit image/Pixabay/WOKANDAPIX)Coveo has released its 2023 Customer Service Relevance Report which found that in an uncertain economy, organisations are under pressure to retain and expand their customers. Ghosting has become more prevalent, and people will now leave brands after only two or three negative experiences.

Across the demographics surveyed, customers expect service and support experience to deliver the most relevant information throughout their brand engagement. This is to ensure they can make the most of a product or service. Although 87% of Gen Z respondents said they’ll give brands more chances than other demographics. 60% of them said they’ll abandon a brand without notice once those chances are gone.

(credit image/LInkedIn/Patrick Martin)
Patrick Martin, GM of Service at Coveo

While offering great customer service should be table stakes, many companies still miss the mark. (Furthermore, spend too much money) on doing everything except the fundamentals.” said Patrick Martin, GM of Service at Coveo. “Our report shows that customers want answers — is your company equipped to supply them? Because customer expectations are constantly evolving, you need to build an experience layer that works across all channels. That experience layer must sit on a flexible foundational platform that includes search and machine learning that allows you to meet your customers – wherever they are. There’s an opportunity to deliver the proactive experience your customers seek and save money doing it.”

Report key findings include:

Great products alone aren’t enough to keep customers:

  • 59% of Gen Z and 49% of Millennials say they will give a brand a third chance before abandoning it. Generation X (40%) and Baby Boomers (32%) are not quite so generous. It’s notable that the digitally native generation has more patience for a poor online experience. But that doesn’t mean that Gen Z will offer brands endless chances when it comes to service.

Rather than complaining, customers will ghost you:

  • 55% of respondents (46% in 2022) say they rarely or never complain about a negative digital customer service experience. 60% of Gen Z respondents say they rarely or never complain to a company when they have a negative digital customer service experience.

No self-service is better than poor self-service

  • 50% say they would prefer no self-service option if it’s going to be a bad experience.
  • 50% say they want to be able to see the actual answer within the search results, not just links.
  • They want more intelligent chatbots (46%).
  • They want advanced filtering that lets you narrow the search to your exact need (44%).
  • They want to be able to search for help within the product you’re using (43%).
  • They want to get recommendations for content that has been helpful to others with a similar problem (33%).

Why customers will abandon a brand:

  • “It’s too hard to talk to an actual person” (overall 53%; Gen Z: 49%).
  • Getting conflicting information from customer service representatives (overall 46%; Gen Z: 43%).
  • Not being able to find the information on their own (overall 43%; Gen Z: 40%).

Industries with the worst customer service:

  1. Retail (36%)
  2. Utilities/service providers (33%)
  3. Health insurance (29%)
  4. Technology providers (27%)

As part of Coveo’s 2023 Customer Service Relevance Report, Arlington Research was commissioned to undertake an online study. The company surveyed 4,000 adults across the US and UK aged 18+ who use a computer as part of their work in companies with 250+ employees. Responses were captured between January 12-25, 2023.

Enterprise Times: What this means for business.

This is a superb title for a report – ‘Bad Self-Service is Worse Than No Self-Service.’ One of the key takeaways from the report is that Great products alone aren’t enough to keep customers. The report suggests that retailers and brands must proactively offer the most relevant information throughout customers’ journeys. This means enterprises must look beyond knowledge bases or marketing content to include multimedia that younger generations prefer.

Customers want to educate themselves with documents, specifications and reports (and prevent future issues). This can also be lucrative in luring in prospects, who are now more likely to do copious amounts of research before buying. While offering great customer service should be a high priority for all brands and retailers, many organisations are still failing. This report could help brands and retailers in the right direction.


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