According to Vonage research, 61% of consumers believe that reaching an IVR menu when calling a business makes for a poor customer experience. This is no big shocker. In fact, the news here may seem like the number is only 61%.
What is shocking however is, more than half would abandon the company altogether as a result. The actual percentage is 51 and Vonage calculated this amounts to $262 per year.
The 2019 Vonage IVR survey, which was based on independent research among 2,010 survey respondents from the United States, found that of those customers who ditched a business as a result of reaching an IVR menu, 89% of the money they would have spent, was then spent with a competitor.
As we mentioned in the lead, 61% of consumers feel that IVR technology makes for a poor customer experience. Perhaps surprisingly, 13% believe it makes for a positive one. And on average, consumers abandoned more than a quarter (27%) of calls they made to businesses in the last year because they reached an IVR, with 85% terminating at least one call.
The 2019 IVR survey findings are consistent with Vonage’s 2018 Serial Switchers’ study, which revealed that U.S. companies providing poor customer service were letting an estimated $75 billion slip into the pockets of their competitors.
Many businesses use an IVR to connect with callers, yet 64% of respondents described having negative feelings such as frustration (47%), stress (7%) and anger (6%) when presented with one. 17% reported ‘no particular emotion’, with only a small percentage feeling hopeful and positive (8 and 4 percent respectfully).
According to the survey, top things customers disliked include: the reason for calling might not be listed (65%), being forced to listen to irrelevant options (63%), IVR keeps callers from reaching a live person (54%) and the menus are usually too long (46%).
Having navigated an IVR and reached a customer service agent, consumers reported feeling more relieved (27%), less frustrated (26%), more hopeful (25%) and less angry (24%) than when they first initiated the call.
“Technology is important, of course – but to connect people, not to keep them apart,” comments Ken McMahon, Senior Vice President, Customer Success. “Customer experience is the one area companies can differentiate and compete in an increasingly commoditized world, and with solutions like Dynamic Routing, which enables customers to reach the most appropriate agent for their call, every time, there’s a path to great CX that’s waiting for smart companies to take.”
Bottom line? Technology has made customer support, sales and service worse for customers but perhaps Vonage technology can make it better.
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