Small Business Customer Service In 2023: A Missed Opportunity? 

Should customers expect the same quality of customer care from every business, large or small? Or should they be more forgiving and understand the challenges facing small businesses nowadays? We wanted to see how small businesses are shaping up.

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Customers expect more from small businesses

The cost-of-living crisis means small businesses are facing a challenging time like no other. In fact, as of April 2023, half of consumers have cut their non-essential spending, which is impacting businesses of all sizes but is particularly concerning for smaller businesses which often have a smaller customer base to rely on.

Excellent customer service is vital for every brand and, yet, at a time when it should be most prioritised, according to the UK Customer Satisfaction Index, consumer satisfaction has declined

What role do small businesses play in this decline? Are they outperforming large businesses by providing a flexible, personalised service, or are they underestimating its importance? We interviewed both customers and businesses to find out what customers want from small businesses compared to what small businesses are actually providing.

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Key findings

We surveyed both customers and small business leaders to identify the disparity between what customers want and what small businesses are offering.

50 percent

of customers will stop buying from a brand after a poor customer service experience.

60 percent

of customers think that the customer service provided by small businesses is not on the same level as that provided by large businesses.

48 percent

of small businesses don’t have a dedicated customer service team or department.

In the full report, we’ll go into detail about:

+ The importance of excellent customer service

+ Small vs large business customer service

+ Missed opportunities for small businesses

+ Average customer service provision by small businesses

+ Why you should be prioritising customer service

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