On Hold wait time can reveal a lot about a company’s efficiency and ability to meet a client’s needs. In fact, the clock has always been ticking when it comes to putting callers on hold. A new survey from American Express reveals when that time runs out.
The average American caller will give you 13 minutes of on hold wait time before hanging up, according to the 2012 American Express Global Customer Service survey. In comparison, Americans will wait an average of 12 minutes for help in person.
In addition to long on hold wait time, the survey lists other customer service complaints, including insensitive or unresponsive customer service reps, being passed from department to department, and having to follow up on issues continually.
The consequences for bad customer service can be severe. Fifty-five percent of respondents said they walked away from a purchase in the past year because of poor customer service. And in this day of social media connections, one bad experience can spread like wildfire. Respondents who use social media tell more people about their customer-service experiences and say they will spend 21 percent more with companies that have great service.
In this kind of volatile climate, an on-hold message that is fully integrated into your marketing and customer services efforts is critical to keeping customers happy, and on the line. In fact, other studies indicate that callers hearing relevant information during on hold wait time will remain on the line much longer, and 88 percent of callers prefer on hold messages to silence or radio.