U.S. adults spend, on average, 384 minutes every year waiting to fix a complaint, or about 6.5 hours -- almost a full work day
Those figures come from Populus Research and Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Kana Software. Analysts at Kana calls the "complaint wait" the "hidden price of doing business" in the U.S., and says the problem is only going to get worse unless consumers smarten up and complain with their wallets and pocketbooks instead of their telephones and email messages.
Here are some other takeaways from their study:
- 71% of U.S. consumers have lodged a customer service complaint in the past three years. The time wasted on each complaint? One hour and four minutes, according to Kana.
- "Full resolution" of a customer service issue takes three attempts, and 69% of customers said they had to repeat their complaint to multiple staff members at the business being targeted for the complaint
- 17% say they have fallen into a customer service "death spiral" where they had to repeat their problem constantly for more than an hour.
- Americans aren't using social media yet, although it can be a powerful consumer tool. Only 7% of Americans turn to Facebook (FB), Twitter or Yelp, among other sites, to issue a complaint.
- Most people (39%) use the phone to lodge a complaint, while 33% use email.
- Who are the most consistent gripers? On average, that would be young Americans aged 25-34, and mostly women in that group.