#FrustrationFridays - Customer Experience Nightmare Stories
Summer is a usually the time when horror movies hit the theaters. With #FrustrationFridays, a weekly Twitter meme and blog column we share some of the worst customer experience nightmares we received in our Customer Tipping Point Survey. Here are a few more horror stories and our Customer Experience takeaways:
I was having problems downloading a ring tone to my son's cell phone from the web so I called customer support. They said I couldn't do it from the phone or web because I had blocked the ability to download anything, yet they were charging me for supposed downloads that I don't think were done. It turned into a huge circular argument. It was clear the agent had no clue what the web experience was, and worse, had no concern that his instructions weren't feasible. I have tried escalating with this company before for other issues which only led to additional frustrations. Unfortunately, they have the best network coverage. I have switched service providers before but had to switch back. i am stuck, but frankly, I think all phone companies suck at customer service. I just stick to using my phone for calls and texts so I don't give them reason for overcharging me for things. I'd be spending more money if I trusted them.
Customer Experience Takeaway: Break down those analytics silos and empower your agents to see every step of the customer experience. A call center agent who has no idea what happened to a customer on the website is going to cause a lot of frustration. We had an excellent webinar with Adele Sage of Forrester Research where she discusses best practices in cross-channel design. Click here to watch a replay of the webinar "Delivering an Integrated Cross Channel Experience."
What I particularly dislike is a credit card payment process that forces you to push buttons to answer irrelevant questions accept/decline additional offers, or you cannot complete the transaction. When this happens I usually throw it back to the clerk, tell them I won't participate, and ask them to make it get to the end.
Customer Experience Takeaway: Don't force customers to go down the up-sell/cross-sell path when they don't want to. By understanding customer behavior through segmentation and past experiences you can engage them better by allowing them to go down their ideal path. Nobody wants to take detours when they're in a rush, so don't add irrelevant questions and extra steps to their experience.
A reputed airline company charging me twice for the same ticket. Fortunately I had booked the tickets with my credit card, so I went ahead and disputed the second charge. The airline company declined - I fought it for over 6 months to get my money back. Not flying that airline anymore.
Customer Experience Takeaway: Check the facts! These sort of disputes are easy to track down and resolve. There has to be an electronic paper trail that will confirm the customers' grievance without upsetting them and forcing them to defect to your competition. The travel industry, which is highly competitive, is plagued with these sorts of stories. Our survey, while not focused specifically on airlines, got a lot of responses about double booking, hidden fees and other similar issues that caused customers to swear off using these companies' services again. Do you have a customer experience horror story to share? Leave us a comment or tweet about it with the #FrustrationFridays tag and we'll include it in our next column. Have a great 4th of July weekend!