The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) recently conducted a study to find out how consumers define their ideal customer experience. The EIU surveyed 2,403 consumers ranging from 18-65 years of age from across the globe. At the same time, 491 senior executives were surveyed to find out what they believed was preventing their companies from providing excellent customer service.

Consumer responses to the question “what makes for an ideal customer experience” follow:

  • 47% said fast responses to a complaint
  • 47% stated a simple purchasing process
  • 12% said a personalized experience
  • 7% cited customized offers based on their preferences

When asked what recourse they take when they’ve received bad customer experience, respondents said:

  • They stop doing business with the company (71%)
  • They tell their friends and family in person or through email (55%)
  • They let the company know they are dissatisfied (45%)
  • They post comments on social media (25%)

So, how do customers respond when they’ve received excellent customer service?

  • 69% make a mental note to buy from the company again
  • 51% tell friends and family
  • 23% post positive comments on social media

When executive respondents were asked what they think prevents them from providing top-notch customer service, they cited:

  • Silos within the organization (36%)
  • Lack of integrated systems (27%)
  • Inflexible technology and application infrastructure (17%)

Other interesting findings follow:

  • 32% of consumers said customer service could be improved with better links between in-store and online services
  • Only 25% of executives said they use search engine optimization to interact with customers while 69% of consumers said they rely on it to shop and compare products
  • 51% of consumers stated that their overall customer experience has improved in the past year
  • Just 7% of consumers said their overall customer experience has become worse in the past year
  • Only 25% of consumers said that most companies they currently do business with provide excellent customer service on a regular basis
  • Consumers cited retail and consumer goods industries provide the best overall customer service and telecommunications companies provide the worst customer service

View the chart and learn more about the study.


MarketingCharts Staff. “Consumers on the Ideal Customer Experience”. 4/2/2015.