Zendesk Benchmark: Customer Satisfaction on the Rise with Big Gains in Emerging MarketsBest and Worst Countries, Industries for Customer Service Identified; U.S. Continues to Rise But Falls Short of Top 10
October 31, 2013
Customer satisfaction rose globally for the second consecutive quarter after more than a year in decline, according to the quarterly Zendesk Benchmark report released today. For the third quarter of 2013, the average customer satisfaction rating reached 82 percent, its highest level since the first quarter of 2012.
Significant gains in countries with fast-growing economies, including Brazil and Russia, coupled with increased ratings in historically low-scoring industries like social media and telecommunications, have attributed to higher levels of global customer satisfaction.
The report is produced by Zendesk, a global provider of software for better customer service, and tracks customer satisfaction and service trends each quarter based on actual interactions between 16,000 participating companies and their customers. Download the full Zendesk Benchmark report for Q3 2013 at: www.zendesk.com/resources/customer-service-benchmark
Emerging Markets on the Rise
Despite rising to 81 percent, the U.S. fell short of the top 10 behind Russia, a country that has historically struggled with customer service but has been steadily rising to break into the top three this quarter. Brazil proved to be another notable emerging market, making the largest percentage gain this quarter (up 10 percentage points). Companies in these fast-growing economies appear to be putting an increased emphasis on delivering better customer service in order to sustain their growth.
Customer Satisfaction by Country:
• Canada: 91% (no change from Q2)
• Australia: 91% (+2 percentage points)
• Russia: 90% (+4 percentage points)
• China: 55% (n/a)
• United Arab Emirates: 59% (+1 percentage point)
• British Virgin Islands: 65% (-2 percentage points)
Customer Satisfaction by Industry:
• Education: 95% (no change from Q2)
• IT Services & Consultancy: 95% (no change)
• Government & Non-profit : 95% (+1 percentage point)
• Social Media: 67% (+3 percentage point change from Q2)
• Financial & Insurance Services: 76% (-1 percentage point)
• Entertainment & Gaming: 76% (no change)
First Reply Time, Support Channels and Customer Tenure
This quarter’s report also examined the impact of time of day, support channel, and customer tenure on customer satisfaction. Looking at first reply time (FRT) and ticket created hour, a slow first response leads to lower satisfaction while speedy replies result in more successful customer service interactions.
While tickets submitted outside normal business hours have the slowest FRT, response time speeds up around 9:00 a.m. after the tickets submitted from the night before have been dealt with and reaches a peak around 6:00 p.m. when support staff leaves for the day.
As companies strive to provide an integrated customer experience across multiple channels, the report shows that the most traditional channel, phone or voice services, receives the highest level of satisfaction. Channels with 1:1 real-time interactions exhibit high levels of customer satisfaction while newer channels, like Twitter and Facebook, rank last as companies experiment with best social support practices.
“The omni-channel consumer is on the rise -- jumping from web to email to chat to Twitter with ease," said Sam Boonin, research lead for the Zendesk Benchmark and vice president of products at Zendesk. “The Zendesk Benchmark is uncovering that companies must maintain a consistent level of service for each channel.”
This quarter, Zendesk also examined the impact of customer tenure on overall satisfaction. While long-time customers overall report higher levels of satisfaction, customers experience many dips and peaks throughout their customer service journeys that vary widely by industry.