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Will Your Customer Service Shine on Black Friday? Key Statistics

By Lucy Holloway

Will Your Customer Service Shine on Black Friday? Key Statistics image BPG image 150x150

As Black Friday hits the UK today, with retailers slashing their prices in an effort to replicate the biggest day in America’s shopping calendar, the pressure on staff in-store and within the contact centre mounts.

Traditionally a post Thanksgiving discount shopping day, marking the start of the Christmas shopping season in the US, UK retailers are keen to follow-suit, offering consumers discounts of up to 70% off today. Mega Monday or Cyber Monday – the busiest online shopping day of the year – will shortly follow on 2nd December, placing a huge stress on retailers customer service departments.

So how can retailers arm staff in-store to deal with the overnight onslaught of customers eagerly wanting instant answers to questions on a range of gadgets and gizmos they may be purchasing for the first time? Add to this the increased pressure on contact centre agents, dealing with a massive increase in enquiries via phone, web chat, e-mail and social media channels.

Being prepared for sudden increases in traffic to your store or other customer channels – whether planned or as a result of an unexpected event – will be paramount to the success of an organisation. The ability to offer customers the same level of customer service during an unusually busy period, as you would during a quieter one, will have a massive impact on a customer’s perception of your brand.

Some key stat’s to consider:

  • 63% of high street retailers expect website traffic to increase by 11% on 2nd December (Source: Barclays)
  • £1.3 billion predicted to be spent online on Mega Monday (Source: Visa Europe)
  • 30% of shoppers plan to do most of their Black Friday shopping online (Source: Accenture)
  • The percentage of online sales completed through mobile devices has risen from 0.4% at the start of 2010 to 27% in Q3 2013 (Source IMRG)
  • 36% of holiday shoppers say social will influence their online purchasing decisions (Source: Adobe)
  • Whilst historically Black Friday sales have been predominantly via brick-and-mortar stores, the lines are now blurring, with e-commerce spend topping the $1 billion dollar mark in the US in 2012.

    Black Friday and Mega Monday’s consumer is now truly multi-channel, using a combination of in-store, websites, e-mail, phone and social media channels, to research, review, make a purchase and contact a company for customer service.

    Today’s retailers are under great pressure to not only compete on price but also compete on delivering a cost efficient and seamless in-store and online customer service that can cope with spikes in demand.

    Will your customer service crumble amidst the chaos or bring calm during the storm?

    Providing today’s consumer with a 24/7 multi-channel customer service – regardless of which touch-point or device they use – can be a key competitive differentiator.

    Free resource: Best Practice Guide to Multi-channel Customer Service

    In order to retain customers, reduce costs and increase sales, having the right technology in place to ensure the customer receives a consistent customer experience is vital.

    Our guide will help you to:

    • Understand the challenges delivering effective online service creates

    • Get an overview of the tools available to meet those challenges

    • Discover the must-haves you need for effective implementation

    Click here to download for free.