As a busy executive, working mother and wife, I rely on online shopping to save me from the holiday madness. And with two teenage children, my shopping experience has changed from a mad dash through Toys R Us to hunting for the best price for the Dr. Dre headphones my 16-year old is dying to have.
I am always shocked at the wide variety (and unpredictable nature) of online shopping experiences and, as a marketer, I have no patience with poorly designed sites and quirky order forms. inContact recently sponsored research on self-service with ICMI and one of the most shocking findings was that almost 44% of contact centers surveyed don’t measure customer feedback on their centers’ self-service channels. Imagine that – after all the expense and time it takes to build a self service solution, almost half these companies settled for the Field of Dreams approach – build it and they will come. But what happens if they don’t come or come once and then, due to the poor quality of the experience, never return?
My “zero tolerance policy” causes me to frequently abandon a full cart and return to the only consistently predictable and high quality shopping experience I know: Amazon.com. What today’s contact centers need to realize is that, unlike a few years back when customers only compared companies in the same category, we now hold them up and ruthlessly compare them to our favorite and most satisfying online experiences. So I expect the same painless, quick and satisfying shopping experience from my insurance provider or healthcare company as I do from my favorite retailer.
I'll echo the challenge Tim Harris made on this blog a few months back: always be aware of your IVR experience and routinely test it yourself. See what kind of experience you have and if you'd keep doing business with your company, or if you would take your business elsewhere. And as always, I'd love to hear about your experience. Please comment below.