Customer Support From Online Retailers

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images/OJO Images

    For customers who hate being put on hold to wait for a live representative on the phone, or who sit by the computer waiting for a response from the company you emailed three days ago, you need to check out STELLAService.com. STELLAService (the first independent provider of customer service ratings for online companies), is a new website that helps customers become aware of how long or short their waiting times are going to be for both phone and email responses.

      In a survey done by STELLAService of the Internet’s top 100 retailers by annual revenue, OfficeDepot.com earned first place for responding to customer emails the fastest (48 minutes), while SierraTrading Post.com ranked first when it comes to the shortest amount of time that customers have to wait on hold before talking to a live customer service representative (6 seconds). The only company that was ranked among the top ten for both the speediest email (01:47:40) and phone support (12 seconds) was Disneystore.com.
     
    Barnesandnoble.com had the longest average call hold time (8 minutes 3 seconds). Not far behind them were CSNStores.com (7 minutes 20 seconds), Macys.com (7 minutes 12 seconds), Zones.com (6 minute 56 seconds), and GreenMountainCoffee.com (4 minutes 50 seconds), while CrateandBarrel.com took and average of 88 hours to respond to customer emails.
     
    The study concluded that out of the 100 top retailers, 31 of them averaged hold times of less than one minute, with the average time to reach a live agent coming in at 1 minute and 41 seconds. The study also found the average email response time across all merchants to be approximately 17 hours.
     
    When customer are trying to reach a live representative the longest hold times occur on Monday and Friday, while the shortest hold time is Sunday. Out of the top 100 Internet retailers, 80% offer call support on Sunday.
     
    STELLAService is dedicated to helping online shoppers make more informed buying decisions. They rate thousands of retailers each year on customer support. The company has a nationwide network of full-time mystery shoppers to evaluate each site undercover, ensuring findings that are unbiased and true to the shopping experience. For this particular study, the company surveyed the top 100 retailers through more than 1200 calls, e-mails, and “mystery shopping” interactions.

    Noting that phone and e-mail support are cited by shoppers as two of the most important factors in customer satisfaction, STELLAService CEO and co-founder Jordy Leiser said the survey’s results would help customers shop smarter, and raise the bar for online retailers seeking to draw more customers and keep their long-term customer loyalty.

    Jordy Leiser has said that prices and product selection is no longer the key differentiator when it comes to online retailers. Customer service is now the number one priority for deal making or breaking in the customer’s mind. The website allows shoppers to quickly glance at which companies offer outstanding customer support and which companies the customer should avoid.
    For more information, visit http://www.STELLASerivce.com