Phone and email reign supreme as top ways to contact businesses

Bernadette Bennett Moneypenny

Bernadette Bennett, Moneypenny

By Legal Futures Associate Moneypenny

Telephone and email are the most preferred ways to contact businesses, according to new research from global outsourced communications provider Moneypenny.

Moneypenny’s Customer Communications Trend Report found that more than a quarter (26%) of people pick up the phone to speak to a business, with email being used by more than a third (34%). 11% of people will use WhatsApp, 9% will use live chat and 8% will use social media.

The phone is the top choice when callers’ needs are “urgent” (42%), “complicated” (34%) or “sensitive” (25%).  The research also found that 64% of people spend longer on the phone to businesses than three years ago – a marked increase on 2022’s figure of 45%.

Callers also detailed what makes a bad phone call – 35% hate calls not being answered, 34% are put off by annoying hold music, and 28% are irritated by being told to check the website for more information.  More than half (54%) won’t leave a voicemail if they can’t get through.

A bad call experience can significantly impact ongoing business success; almost 2 in 5 (38%) people say they would go elsewhere following a poor call, and the same would make a complaint. Nearly a quarter (24%) would write a negative review.

Bernadette Bennett heads the legal sector at Moneypenny, which provides telephone answering and live chat support to more than 1,000 law firms across the UK. She said: “Calls durations have increased as people have more urgent or complex requirements that need to be explained in detail. I think this is also why email is such an important tool for legal firms’ clients, as it provides an additional means to share complicated or sensitive information.

“Legal firms should factor longer call durations into their call handling plan and ensure patience, empathy and understanding are in abundance. This will help them stand out for the right reasons and give clients the accessibility and responsiveness they need.”

The report also revealed that 42% of people are happy to have their queries solved online, and 57% are happy to use live chat – a tool which allows web visitors to ask questions and get help from real people in real-time.

Bernadette concluded: “If legal firms invest in their phone-led customer service to meet callers’ changing needs and complement it with digital channels, such as live chat and social media, they will deliver a much more well-rounded, seamless and positive experience for clients.”

To read Moneypenny’s 2023 Customer Communications Trend Report in full, visit here.

Associate News is provided by Legal Futures Associates.
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