Facebook, email top customer service channels in U.K.

March 21, 2016

A new study regarding retail customer service in the U.K. reveals Facebook and email are besting Twitter when it comes to providing consumers with answers.

The Eptica Multichannel Customer Experience Study assessed 40 top U.K. retailers, across food, wine, electronics, fashion, and entertainment, on how fast and accurately they responded to customer inquiries via chat, email, Twitter and Facebook.

"Overall, the research found minor changes in performance since 2015, with the total number of questions answered on the web, email and Twitter remaining static at 55 percent. Company websites provided responses to 66 percent of questions, up 1 percent from last year, while the email channel has become less accurate over the last year, successfully answering 55 percent of questions (down from 58 percent)," notes the study.

Twitter improved by 2 percent, responding to 45 percent of queries, despite the fact 95 percent of retailers use the social platform tool.

In the U.S. retail segment there is a very different customer service environment as email rules over social media as the top customer response channel. Retailers responded to 73 percent of email queries, 54 percent of Facebook communications and just 20 percent of Twitter inquiries.

"Retailers on both sides of the Atlantic seem to be adopting fundamentally different strategies when it comes to customer service," said Olivier Njamfa, CEO and co-founder, Eptica, in a release.

"What the Eptica research demonstrates is that retailers in the U.K. and U.S. are focusing on specific channels, rather than adopting a truly multichannel approach that delivers high levels of service, whatever the customer's channel of choice. Companies need to learn from each other and deliver a consistent experience if they are to thrive in increasingly global markets."



(% answered/average speed)


(% answered/average speed)


55% (32 hours 53 minutes)

73% (7 hours 51 minutes)


59% (6 hours 36 minutes)

54% (27 hours)


45% (5 hours 40 minutes)

20% (31 hours)





13% (9 minutes 40 seconds)

35% (4 minutes 28 seconds)

Overall the study reveals no companies are providing a consistent customer service experience across multiple communication channels and just 10 percent are providing an accurate response on three.

Topics: Customer Service, Technology, Trends / Statistics

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