New American Express survey reveals Canadians willing to spend up to 12% more for excellent service
MARKHAM, ON, NOV. 13, 2014 /CNW/ - Today new data reveals that three out of four (76%) Canadians have spent more with a company because of a history of positive customer service – a strong reminder to Canadian businesses that providing a high level of service needs to be top of mind.
Continuing to grow its deep focus on the customer and rich knowledge of how greatly service impacts consumer experience, Amex once again conducts the American Express Global Service Barometer. The survey explores consumer attitudes and preferences around customer service in 10 countries.
"Great customer service has long been a key ingredient of successful companies everywhere, and these survey results clearly indicate the effect it has on a company's bottom line," says Julie Hay, Vice President and General Manager, World Service at American Express Canada. "We understand this first hand, and the work we do to demonstrate our commitment to our Relationship Care brand of service is what differentiates us from the competition. Providing premium customer service experiences are not only our commitment but a company-wide priority."
The survey shows that nearly six in 10 (57%) consumers walked away from a business transaction or purchase in the past year due to a poor customer service experience. Customer service also ranked as one of the most important factors Canadians consider when choosing a new company to do business with, finishing second only to reasonable pricing, but ahead of product quality and convenience.
In addition, the study revealed that 40 per cent of Canadians believe businesses are paying less attention to customer service (more than any other country surveyed) and only two per cent of Canadians believe that companies exceed their customer service expectations. Companies should note that 94 per cent of Canadians will talk about their service experiences, even if they aren't positive.
Customers talk about their service experiences
On average, consumers tell eight people about a good experience and 17 people about a bad one. In fact, a full 50 per cent of Canadians admit they talk about their positive customer service experiences, further highlighting just how important it is for businesses to make great service a top priority.
Businesses trying to attract new customers should also take note that positive word-of-mouth from friends and family (44%) was shown to be more powerful in attracting new business than a sale or promotion (34%) and much more effective than "an interesting ad" (3%).
"Knowing that Canadians are quick to share their service experiences, it's in a company's best interest to ensure those conversations are positive. That's why at American Express, great service isn't just about answering a customer's inquiry, it's about the full experience they have when they interact with our brand," says Hay. "Whether it's through our Customer Care Professionals, our Card products, travel benefits, or advanced ticket access to a great concert, service is at the heart of everything we do."
Social media playing a more significant role
More than one in five (21%) Canadians say they have used social media to get a customer service response in the past year and over half of them (55%) feel Canadian companies improved their response times over social media channels.
While turning customer connections into relationship- deepening moments is where companies like American Express excel, with the rise of customer service on social media, that same mindset needs to translate whichever platform customers chose to be served.
"Every interaction is an opportunity to understand our customers better, which is why we want to be wherever our Cardmembers are to help them in whichever way they choose - whether that is via Twitter, e-mail, or over the phone," says Hay. "The voice of our customers is our most important measure of success."
Given Canadians reward great customer service more than ever, there is an opportunity for companies to prioritize customer service and not only stand out from competitors, but to grow their customer base through of word of mouth referrals and increase their bottom line.
About American Express Canada
American Express in Canada operates as Amex Bank of Canada and Amex Canada Inc. Both are wholly owned subsidiaries of the New York based American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., the largest operating unit of the American Express Company. Amex Bank of Canada is the issuer of American Express charge and credit cards, with outstanding products like the American Express® Gold Rewards Card, the American Express® Platinum Card, and the American Express® AeroplanPlus® Gold Card. Amex Canada Inc. operates Travellers Cheques divisions in Canada. American Express opened its first offices in Toronto and Hamilton in 1853 and now employs 3,700 Canadians coast-to-coast. For more information, visit AmericanExpress.ca or connect with us at Facebook.com/AmericanExpressCanada and YouTube.com/AmericanExpressCAD.
About the 2014 Global Customer Service Barometer
The American Express® Global Customer Service Barometer is a study conducted by American Express and Ebiquity, exploring customer attitudes and preferences around customer service. Research was completed online among a random sample of 1,001 Canadian consumers aged 18+. Interviews were conducted by Ebiquity, a team of independent marketing performance specialists, between August 19 and September 2, 2014. The overall results have a margin of error of +/- 3.1 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. The same survey methodology was used in the U.S., Mexico, the U.K., Italy, India, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan and Australia.
Image with caption: "New American Express survey reveals Canadians willing to spend up to 12% more for excellent service (CNW Group/American Express)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20141113_C7584_PHOTO_EN_7930.jpg
SOURCE: American Express