48 percent of shoppers use online postings/blogs to get others' opinions about a company's customer-service reputation.
Bad service won't fly with networked consumers. More and more customers are going online to scour blogs and social networking sites to get the skinny on a company's reputation before shopping. In what it calls its Global Customer Service Barometer, American Express did an online survey of a random sample of 1,000 U.S. consumers age 18 or over. You know their pain: Calling a company's help desk for a question on software and getting the pass-around treatment, stuck on hold for an eternity. Or the shoes they ordered online end up being three sizes too small. Or the installation team for a new entertainment center never shows up on the day they rearrange their lives to be home for the scheduled service call. The survey from American Express shows that shoppers armed with tech tools are less forgiving than ever when it comes to bad service. And many think service is getting worse, not better, in these economic times. When a purchase goes badly, consumers expect businesses to do more than simply correct the problem.
Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.
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