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Are We in the Era of Impatience?

DZone's Guide to

Are We in the Era of Impatience?

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Watching Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory the other day it suddenly hit me… I’m turning into Veruca Salt! You remember Veruca – the spoiled one who wanted everything, immediately?!

Well turns out, I want answers… I want them now. I don’t want to wait for the morning to figure out how to do something… I want to know now. I want live updates, breaking news, video tutorials, instant price quotes, and more. The era of information has quickly turned into the era of impatience.

When it comes to finding answers and researching products, I am very Veruca. And companies should take notice, because I’m not alone.

Already, 70 percent of consumers expect a self-service option for handling commercial questions and complaints, according to a study from SSI. Sometimes, hours, even minutes can make the difference between a satisfied and dissatisfied customer. And while nothing can replace the experience of dealing with a helpful, insightful, human being, many companies are turning to technology to fill the gap and make answers and information available in searchable knowledge bases for consumers.

In fact, 91 percent of respondents to a survey by Coleman Parkes said they would use an online knowledge base if it were available and tailored to their needs. And 40 percent of people who called customer support lines looked for answers online first.

While Veruca’s behavior was bratty and rude, being able to easily find things online when you want them is increasingly mission critical for a business.

Is self-service the Golden Ticket for customer support? If done well in conjunction with personal interactions at critical times, then it truly can be.

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