New Customer Rage Study Just in Time for the Holidays

Does holiday shopping give you rage? You’re not alone. According to a new Customer-Rage Study, conducted by the University of Arizona’s W. P. Carey School of Business, Customer Care Measurement and Consulting, and NOVO 1, more than 56 million American households experienced at least one problem while shopping during the past year, and about $76 billion in revenue was at stake for the businesses involved.

One of the main findings of the study was that customers were more dissatisfied with the company having issued a product or service complaint than if they never complained at all. This is the result of the frustration that customers experience when customer service representatives are less than helpful when dealing with their issues.

The four major consumer frustrations cited in the report are:

  • Too many automated menus
  • Too few customer service reps
  • Spending too much time dealing with the problem
  • Having to contact the company four times to get a result

Some of the study’s other findings included the following:

  • Despite the popularity of the Internet, people are still 11 times more likely to complain via phone than Web.
  • Customer-complaint posting on social-networking sites, such as Facebook, has nearly doubled from 19 to 35 percent since 2011.
  • If the customer was satisfied, he or she only told an average of 10 to 16 people about the problem, but if customers were left dissatisfied, they told an average of 28 people.
  • When companies added free remedies, such as an apology, to any other monetary relief they gave customers, satisfaction doubled from 37 to 74 percent.

Don’t let your holidays be ruined by poor customer service. To avoid a problem in the first place, make sure to always be reading the fine print when it comes to a company’s return policies or other issue areas. When in doubt, ask questions or get it in writing. If you wish to report a problem, expedite your service by directly emailing a company’s executive team and always stating clearly and succinctly what’s wrong and how you want it fixed.

Also make sure to contact your local BBB at with any issues or complaints you may have.

For more information on the Customer-Rage Study, visit

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About Hannah Sassi

Hi, my name is Hannah Sassi and I am the Communications Intern for the Council of Better Business Bureaus in Arlington, VA. My hometown is Hatfield, Massachusetts and I am currently a freshman at The George Washington University majoring in Business with a specialization in Economics and Public Policy.