Poor service is driving consumers from the high street with retailers lagging behind other industries in service standards, new research has shown.
Market Force polled more than 5,000 UK shoppers and found 88% leave a store with no purchase because of poor customer service. According to the research, 41% of shoppers cited in-store staff’s lack of interest in their needs as the biggest frustration. Despite this, the reserch showed over three quarters of respondents actually prefer to shop in-store.
When asked what industry delivered the best service, hotels were ranked highest with 31.5% followed by restaurants/pubs (28.3%) and banks (10.8%). Retailers lagged behind with department stores, local convenience stores, supermarkets and clothing retailers each scoring less than 10% for best customer service.
Additionally, the research revealed that retailers unable to deliver satisfactory in-store experience are wasting marketing budgets. The research showed that half of shoppers claimed promotions drive them to stores but once in-store, interactions with staff drive customers’ purchasing decisions.
When asked what makes a good customer service experience beside personal attention and recommendation, shoppers cited technology with 63% liking self-service checkouts and 49% liking contactless payment options.
Tim Ogle from Market Force Europe said: “Good customer service doesn’t have to be expensive. Small, inexpensive changes can have an oversize impact on whether someone buys in your shop and how much they spend.
“For example, our research shows eight of 10 (80%) shoppers want to be taken to a product when asking about its location. It’s these little gems of insight that turn a question into a sale. These findings should be a wakeup call to retailers looking for cost effective ways to grow their business.”