Travel Agents

52% of customers would bail on travel brands over poor service

Hannah Edensor

The travel industry is all about customer service – and good customer service at that – so it’s no wonder that so many customers are willing to walk away when they experience bad service.

A new report from provider of cloud mobile and online business messaging, LivePerson, has shown just what drives Aussie brand loyalty, and how loyal customers are to their favourite travel brands.

According to the research, 31.7 per cent of respondents said they’ve been loyal to the same brand for more than 10 years, and it comes with a nice little pricetag too.

The report also showed that the respondents, nearly a quarter (23.6 per cent) say they spend more than $1,000 with their preferred brand every year. Now multiply that by the number of loyal customers you’ve got…. You get the idea.

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Some of the other key findings include:

  • Older consumers (ages 45+) are more likely to be loyal to a brand for 10 or more years (50.5 per cent vs. 21.1 per cent).
  • Nearly half (41.8 per cent) of respondents said they would switch brands if the brand provided poor customer service, and one in five (20.9 per cent) respondents said they would switch after a single bad customer service experience.
  • A majority (52 per cent) of older consumers (ages 45+) report having a nemesis brand — a brand they will never do business with again because of the poor customer service they received.
  • Nearly 20 per cent of those ages 18–44 admitted to cursing or being rude to customer care agents.

One of the biggest stand outs is the cost of poor customer service with your brand, and what you stand to lose if this happens.

Over half of all respondents (51.3 per cent) stated there is a brand they would never do business with again as a result of poor customer service, and one in five (20.9 per cent) said they would switch brands after just one bad customer service experience.

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That broken down into travel-specific companies looks a bit like this:

 Screen Shot 2018-01-22 at 5.46.17 PM

Quality drives loyalty, according to 45.9 per cent of respondents. This is followed by price (16.1 per cent) and good customer service (15.1 per cent).

Interestingly, customer service is the loyalty driver with the most longevity; 53 per cent of those who stated customer service was the most important factor have been loyal to the same brand for more than 10 years. 

 

But there’s no room for complacency. Respondents were asked to answer ‘true’ or ‘false’ for the following question:

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Their response showed that there’s plenty of people who will hold a grudge against brands when they don’t deliver on their service or product promises. This was their answer:

Screen Shot 2018-01-22 at 5.48.29 PM

LivePerson’s Regional Vice President for APAC, Andrew Cannington, said that the concerning thing for brands is that many may not even be aware they are losing customers.

Over a third (35.9 per cent) of consumers either don’t tell brands they are dissatisfied or simply stop shopping with them. This figure is far higher for younger generations (18–34 years old), with nearly half (47.4 per cent) ‘going silent’ following a poor brand experience.

“More often than not, brand loyalty comes back to the customer experience. That means brands have make it easy and simple for consumers to communicate with them,” said Cannington.

“By designing a conversational customer journey, brands can reach consumers the same way they connect with their friends – through messaging – with personalised interactions, enhancing the overall brand experience.”

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