Do men and women feel the same way when it comes to the customer experience?
When it comes to the online-to-offline journey, one thing would seemingly affect the preferences of consumers more than any other: that of gender. This will relate strongly to what people choose to buy, who they want to speak to at the other end of the phone and how willing they are to have their personal information used in the customer journey.
Research we recently carried out focussed on the customer journey and how important aspects of going from online to offline are for both male and female consumers. We found that more men than women would be inclined to purchase a high value product if the call centre operator was someone they could relate to. However, more women than men would say that their loyalty to the brand would be strengthened if they could talk to an agent who may have bought a similar product to you. The value here for the brand is clear – both genders benefit from talking to a well-informed operator, it can help convert sales and strengthens brand allegiance.
In terms of what is most important to consumers when on the phone to a company, both male and female respondents (70% for men; 79% for women) said that being put through to a well-informed person that solves the problem for them was of highest priority. A local call centre is valued more highly by women, whereas men would prefer to only speak to one person – they don’t like being passed from pillar to post.
Carrying on the theme, men are more willing to let their computer searches be used to inform the agent before speaking to them on the phone, feeling it would save them a lot of time and hassle. This is compared to 70% of women asked who would rather computer searches were not used to inform the call. This is often due to ‘the unknown’ and privacy concerns: if the data is used to improve the overall customer experience, the attitude to using computer searches is more positive.
There is a larger amount of the female population who are naturally more wary of deals compared to men; 55% of women would really value speaking to someone to verify that their facts and information are straight, compared to exactly half of the male respondents asked. We can infer from this that men are happier to go along with the information they find themselves, and need less reassurance from an agent on the phone.
Both male and female respondents would be eager to share the fact that they had received good customer service with family and friends; both in real life and online. However, women would be 11% more likely to share with friends and family (78%) when compared to men (67%), and would also be keener to talk about it on social networks, with 25% of female respondents compared to 19% of male.
It would appear that both genders would be happy to turn offline and talk to an agent about a potential service or product, but each gender wants different things from that call. Females would prefer a local call centre and men would prefer to be put through to that one person that can solve their needs. In terms of sharing good customer service, both genders will do this, but women are more likely to than men. Regardless, both men and women value the human voice, and will therefore take the customer journey offline for additional reassurance. It’s clear there is more than just the online experience when it comes to making a purchase.
Read our full whitepaper here to find out even more about how voice is the new relationship milestone.