16 omnichannel customer service statistics you need to know in 2023
Picture walking into a brick-and-mortar store with horrible customer service.
No employees greet you. You visit the customer service desk with a question or to make a return — not only do you have to explain your concern, but you have to speak with multiple employees and re-explain yourself each time.
The store has no record of your prior purchases, and, worst of all, they can’t even answer your question, after all.
It’s not a pretty picture, right?
Now imagine the opposite experience: the best possible customer service.
From the moment you enter the store, you’re greeted by name. With just the touch of a button, an employee reviews your purchase history and immediately identifies what you need help with.
Your in-person experience is consistent with your experience shopping online with the store, and they even offer you a free shipping coupon for your next digital order.
The customer service rep not only solves your concern, but they offer personalized recommendations for products that might interest you on your next trip.
The latter scenario might seem like it’s too good to be true. But in reality, it’s the kind of digital experience customers want — and expect — from customer service.
And in the age of e-commerce, omnichannel customer service gives us the tools to bring that best-case scenario to life in the digital sphere.
Read on for 15 omnichannel customer service statistics that prove consumers expect seamless experiences across all channels — and why you should provide them.
What is omnichannel customer service?
Omnichannel customer service offers a seamless customer experience across multiple communication channels.
Whether your customers contact you via text, WhatsApp, social, email, or live chat, omnichannel service lets you answer their questions and respond to their concerns without missing a beat.
Omnichannel customer service differs from multichannel in that it doesn’t just offer several ways for customers to get in touch with you — it offers a consistent experience across all channels.
Your customers spend their days on their devices — 4.8 hours a day, on average — and they spend their screen time switching between apps constantly. When customers have a question about their order, need a shipping update, have a return to make, or want to know about future offerings, they want to connect with your team on their terms.
Sometimes that means using their favourite channel every time they reach out. But many customers will reach out in multiple ways — often about the same order — and they expect the same great customer experience however they contact you. You need to deliver a consistent experience and prompt answers to their questions and concerns no matter what.
Omnichannel customer service fits the bill.
Behind the scenes, your customer support team uses one solution to deftly respond to customer outreaches from any channel. Tools like team inboxes keep historical interactions centrally located. That way, your team can quickly review the customer’s recent orders or messages and reach out to a team member internally if needed.
Customers don’t have to reexplain themselves, and they receive streamlined support for their unique needs.
What are the benefits of omnichannel customer service?
By keeping all of your customer interactions in one place, an omnichannel solution lets you jump into helping customers right away.
Think back to our earlier in-store analogy — the ideal customer service example highlights some of the key benefits of omnichannel service:
- Omnichannel customer service allows brands to greet returning customers with context.
- Customers feel known and don’t have to repeat themselves to multiple reps.
- Customers get the same great experience, no matter which channels they use to contact you.
- Your support team can provide a more individualized experience by offering recommendations based on the customer’s history.
When done right, omnichannel service deepens loyalty, converts more effectively, and benefits customers and support teams alike.
By the numbers: 15 omnichannel service statistics you need to know in 2023
Still not convinced omnichannel is the way to go? Here are the latest numbers you should know when it comes to customer behaviour and the impact of omnichannel service.
1. 60-70% of consumers research and purchase both online and in-store across categories. (McKinsey, 2021)
Shopping habits have drastically changed in the previous years. Customers now use diversified channels, both in where and how they shop and in how they look for support after they buy.
2. 53% of holiday shoppers in the U.S. say that they check online to make sure a product is in stock before going to the store to buy it. (Think With Google, 2022)
The search habits of more than half of customers show that they prefer the convenience of omnichannel shopping. They expect digital channels to align with in-store offerings, which is all the more reason that incredible customer support is essential.
3. 88% of customers say that the experience a company provides is as important as products or services. (Salesforce, 2022)
For your customers, it’s not enough that their purchase meets their expectations. A large majority of people feel that interactions with your brand before and after buying — including support interactions — matter just as much. You need to make the experience as enjoyable and user-friendly as possible, and omnichannel communication lets you do that.
4. 76% of customers expect consistent interactions across departments. (Salesforce, 2022)
More than three-fourths of customers are looking for a similar experience across your entire brand. Omnichannel service lets your organization offer a unified experience, no matter how customers contact you or who they talk to.
5. 73% of consumers expect companies to know their needs and expectations. (Salesforce, 2020)
Knowing your customer isn’t above-and-beyond customer service — consumers say that it should be a given. With omnichannel service, you keep the customer’s history and preferences front and center, so you can deliver informed and helpful resolutions.
6. 39% of customers say that a customer service agent’s lack of knowledge is the most frustrating aspect of poor customer service, followed by 28% who say having to repeat information is the most frustrating part. (Zippia, 2022)
These two customer pet peeves cut right to the heart of omnichannel service. Customer support that stands out means giving knowledgeable guidance and a seamless experience across channels (and representatives). Omnichannel service can help with both by equipping your team with the customer context they need to find essential answers.
7. 39% of US businesses said that their main challenge in optimizing the customer experience throughout their journey is a lack of interdepartmental collaboration. (Statista, 2021)
When working to improve customer service interactions, businesses struggle to collaborate and create seamless workflows. They need an omnichannel approach to help teams work together better and ensure customers get effective support.
8. Only 15% of shoppers say that they find it easy to get help or support while buying products online. (Incisiv, 2022)
One of the best ways to make support simpler and easier for your customers? Offer them multiple channels to get in touch with you seamlessly. Then, follow through by giving them a consistent experience, no matter who they talk to or which channels they use.
9. Among global audiences, customers use these leading channels to contact businesses:
- More than 40% prefer website or mobile app across all age demographics.
- Around one-third prefer social messaging apps in all age groups up to age 55.
- Around 20% prefer SMS or texting across all age groups.
Across all demographics, we can see a clear spread in the ways customers contact brands. But while they may prefer one particular channel, brands are responsible for supporting and connecting the multiple ways they might reach out across their customer journey.
10. 91% of shoppers say that the ability of retailers to listen to them and understand their challenges is the most important element of service. (Incisiv, 2022)
Understanding your customers and their challenges starts with the support experience. Brands that stand out don’t just offer multiple channels for communication — they offer a smooth experience between each interaction that makes the customer feel heard.
11. 48% of customers considered switching brands in the last year in search of better customer service. (Salesforce, 2022)
Great customer service is directly connected to your bottom line, and it affects customer loyalty. When customers reach out for support and it doesn’t align with their expectations, you just might lose their business forever.
12. 43% of organizational leaders say that creating omnichannel experiences is one of the most challenging tasks in improving customer experience — and 43% also say that customer demands for omnichannel experiences have increased. (Forrester, 2020)
Meeting rising customer expectations starts with an omnichannel solution. Multichannel support no longer fits the bill — omnichannel support that integrates all channels is how brands tackle this challenge.
13. 62% of shoppers who experience a failed transaction will not return to the retailer. (Incisiv, 2022)
Great customer service that seamlessly resolves customer issues drives loyalty and revenue. Failure to deliver that experience — either through a poor support experience or a failed order — can be costly.
14. Personalization typically drives a 10-15% revenue lift for brands. (McKinsey, 2021)
In the customer service sphere, an omnichannel approach is one of the best ways to personalize. It lets you recognize the customer right away, tailor your support to their needs and history, and offer an excellent experience across every channel.
15. By focusing on omnichannel, Nike has seen ecommerce sales surge to more than 30% of its overall business. (Nike via McKinsey, 2021)
Major names like Nike have transformed their business through an omnichannel approach to their business — and they’re not alone. Brands like Starbucks have deepened personalization and repeat sales through an omnichannel approach to caring for customers.
16. A single negative experience can have dramatic effects on customer retention. According to recent research, 61% of customers would consider switching to a competitor after just one unfavorable incident.
This data emphasizes the importance of maintaining high-quality service and resolving issues promptly and effectively. A customer's first experience with your brand can make or break their loyalty. Brands must therefore invest in training and processes to ensure every interaction is positive, to avoid losing their customers to competitors. This is especially crucial in today's competitive business landscape, where customers have numerous alternatives readily available. (Customer Experience Impact Report, 2023)
📚 Related: 5 inspiring customer service examples
Ready for more?
Now that you know the numbers, dig even deeper into the power of omnichannel customer service. Learn how Trengo customers have delighted customers and transformed support experiences across every channel.
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