SINGAPORE – In a post-pandemic environment where brick and mortar stores are recovering, and the omni-channel shopping experience continues gaining traction, the search is back for the Republic’s best customer service providers.
From now to March 26, The Straits Times and Germany-based firm Statista are looking to identify organisations that provide such exemplary service at str.sg/cust2324.
Singapore’s Best Customer Service 2023/2024 survey spans 95 categories across bricks-and-mortar retailers for clothing, food and home goods, beauty and wellness services as well as online services and digital products.
This year’s categories will also include pet suppliers and grooming services.
The survey invites consumers to share their views on the best customer service providers here.
To qualify for evaluation as part of the survey, companies must have had customers who bought products, utilised their services or researched information on them within the last three years.
“As our survey focuses on the consumer’s perspective, we will be curious to see how customer service is evaluated this year as compared to last year, when we were still in the midst of the pandemic,” said Statista analyst Camille Lebon.
Citing Asian market research company Rakuten Insight and Statista, she added that as at November 2022, 70 per cent of people in Singapore planned to do their holiday shopping both online and in brick-and-mortar shops, while 25 per cent targeted to buy only online.
Only 6 per cent aimed to visit physical stores.
“Therefore, we expect omni-channel strategies to continue to expand this year, and that brick and mortar will recover slowly,” she said.
Ms Maggie Au, course chair for the diploma in marketing at Temasek Polytechnic’s School of Business, noted that with many brands offering omni-channel retail formats, customers will expect a similar level of service and convenience across the different formats.
“For instance, customers would expect a delivery service to be offered when they purchase in-store in the same way that delivery service is a standard service when they shop online,” she said.
She added that it would be important for brands to continually assess the service offered on the various platforms to ensure consistency, and meet or even exceed expectations.
Ms Lebon noted that customer service in the post-pandemic era is shaped by a shift towards more digital solutions, driven by artificial intelligence like chatbots and evolutions like ChatGPT.