ANZ customers have high CX expectations

Thursday, 11 May, 2023

ANZ customers have high CX expectations

Between two and five frustrating customer experiences is enough to make 80% of Australian and New Zealand customers think about switching brands, according to new research.

The ‘State of Customer Experience’ report has found that poor customer experiences are increasingly threatening brand loyalty. Nearly one-third (31%) of consumers in the Asia–Pacific region (APAC) opted to take their business elsewhere after an dissatisfactory interaction last year, with the highest customer experience (CX) expectations found in ANZ consumers. The report also found that 52% become enraged by a dropped call, compared to 25% of respondents in Japan and 21% in China.

The research, published by Genesys, also reveals the number one challenge for APAC organisations —  keeping up with rising consumer expectations, which is putting their bottom line at risk as they struggle to deliver relationship-building experiences.

In the third edition of the global benchmarking study, ‘The State of Customer Experience’ examines how consumer preferences for personalised, empathetic experiences, rapidly increasing digital channel use and declining satisfaction with automated interactions create mounting pressure for organisations worldwide.

Bad experiences kill customer loyalty

Expectations about what makes a great customer experience are rising faster than most organisations can keep up with — and consumers aren't afraid to walk away when their needs aren’t met.

  • A quarter of APAC consumers have lost their temper during a business interaction; some (13%) had experiences so bad that they were driven to tears. Less than half (41%) of APAC consumers have felt highly valued after a call, and this figure is even less in ANZ at 35%.
  • ANZ consumers are nearly three times more likely to be upset by a dead-end chatbot than consumers in either Japan or South Korea.
  • Across the APAC region as a whole, nearly two-thirds of consumers (63%) say they would only buy or prefer to buy from companies aligned with their values and willingly pay more in the process. The exception is ANZ, where just 37% of consumers would be prepared to pay such a premium.

“It’s clear from the State of CX report that customers are willing to take their business elsewhere if their interactions with businesses are not handled quickly, professionally and with an empathetic approach,” said Mark Buckley, Vice President Australia & New Zealand at Genesys.

“Business and CX leaders must therefore shift their focus from business-centric, ‘inside out’ to people-centric, ‘outside in’ decision-making. In practice, this involves adopting technology to deliver proactive, predictive and hyper-personalised experiences to deepen their customer connection across every marketing, sales and service moment on any channel.”

CX excellence requires seamless experiences and an investment in employees

As organisations invest, consumer preferences and attitudes should play a key role in determining which technologies and tools to use:

  • Better chatbot and employee connections start with knowledge: While chatbot use for customer service is on the rise, so is consumer frustration. In fact, while 44% of the surveyed CX leaders across APAC say they currently use proactive chatbots to engage website customers — a higher percentage than any other region in the world — only 20% of consumers find chatbot engagement an extremely satisfying experience. Consumers cite not being able to reach a live agent from a chatbot and having to repeat a conversation they had with a bot to an agent as their top frustrations. For organisations to reap the potential of bots, they’ll need to focus on creating a more seamless flow of the right information across channels and interactions, making it easier and faster for customers to accomplish their goals.
  • Connected customer experiences are key: According to CX Leaders, the biggest challenge to delivering seamless experiences is the lack of carryover of customer context from one channel to another. To resolve this, most organisations recognise they need stronger capabilities to coordinate every consumer touchpoint. Some 74% of CX leaders in APAC say that implementing a customer experience platform that integrates systems is their top technology priority for 2023. The key focus is better visibility, from the enterprise level down to individual interaction data to drive omnichannel CX and coordinate each step of the customer experience.
  • Voice is no longer the leading channel: With digital channel use accelerating, on a global level, email has overtaken voice for the first time as the most common method to reach customer service (72% using email vs 68% using voice). However, just 12% of APAC respondents overall selected email as their top-ranked channel for CX interactions, since it typically does not result in a first-contact resolution — consumers’ most important criterion. When given a choice, APAC consumers still prefer a call, with voice interactions as the primary choice of communication overall. However, preference for this channel falls quickly based on customer age (almost half of baby boomers prefer voice vs just 20% of Gen Z), requiring organisations to evolve their customer engagement model for this digital generation.

The report reinforces that for organisations to succeed today, they must take a people-centric, unified approach to customer and employee experiences. Organisations that leverage digital and AI technology to deliver the power of personalisation and empathy in every experience will stay ahead of competitors by building loyalty while managing business costs.

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