The more complex or difficult a customer service request is, the more people prefer talking to a person on the phone. While we are seeing minor gains in the popularity of live chat, there is still a significant gap between those numbers. 37 percent of people prefer the phone for a complex issue compared to 12 percent and 48 percent prefer the phone compared to 4 percent for difficult situations. Both of these channels offer the value of a live person on the other end, but there are layers of value that still remain in the phone conversation, especially in the human voice. I had a terrible experience with Google Play Store support over chat that might not have happened if we were talking on the phone.
I was born and raised in the Silicon Valley, a place where we often get ahead of ourselves by making grand pronouncements that are sometimes premature. One of the most recent I’ve heard in customer service circles is how the phone and web are dead. They are not and it would be foolish for any company serious about service to dismiss them. It’s in the numbers my friends.