J.D. PowerSubstantial benefits accrue to wireless carriers when their sales representatives demonstrate cell phone or tablet service to wireless customers prior to purchase. Customer satisfaction “improves considerably and the propensity to visit the same retailer again doubles,” according to the second volume of the semi-annual J.D. Power 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Full-Service Study and the J.D. Power 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Non-Contract Study.

J.D. Power’s series of market research reports survey Americans who have had a sales transaction with their current wireless carrier across any of three retail channels within the past six months: phone calls with sales reps, visits to a retail wireless store, and online. J.D. Power then rates customer satisfaction according to six criteria on a 1,000-point scale: store sales representatives, website, store facility, offerings and promotions, cost of service, and phone sales representative.

J.D. Power found that over half (55 percent) of wireless customers said they made a purchase from their wireless carrier during the past six months. Sixty-six percent made purchases in-store, 24 percent online and 10 percent by calling their carrier.

Mobile Customer Satisfaction
Overall, customer satisfaction among customers whose sales reps demonstrated wireless device services and features came in at 832. Overall customer satisfaction among customers who didn’t receive a demonstration totaled 711.

Of those wireless customers who made in-store purchases, 61 percent said they received a demonstration by or had features explained by a sales rep. Almost half (46 percent) who received a demonstration during in-store visits said they “definitely will” shop at the same retail shop again. That compares favorably with the 23 percent of those who did not receive a demonstration who gave that answer.

“Providing a demonstration is an opportunity for carriers to build loyalty among customers,” J.D. Power highlights. Thirty-seven percent of customers who received demonstrations said they “definitely will not” switch carriers as compared to 26 percent of those who did not receive a demo.

Furthermore, customers were more satisfied with sales reps when they demonstrated how a device works at the the point-of-sale. Satisfaction with sales reps totaled 843 when demonstrations had been given as opposed to 693 when they had not.

Demonstrating smartphones and tablets didn’t require much time either, J.D. Power found. On average, sales reps’ demonstrations about how to operate a new device took around eight minutes. In addition, the total amount of transaction time among customers who received a demonstration from sales reps was less than that for those who weren’t given a demonstration – 54.6 vs. 56.1 minutes.

More broadly, overall satisfaction was 792 among full-service wireless customers who made a recent sales transaction and 783 among non-contract wireless customers. AT&T topped the ranks of full-service wireless carriers with a score of 801. T-Mobile followed closely, scoring 796.

Boost Mobile topped the ranks of non-contract wireless carriers in terms of overall customer satisfaction with a score of 800. MetroPCS (793) and Virgin Mobile (791) followed.

Commenting on the studies’ results, J.D. Power Senior Director of Telecommunications Kirk Parsons stated, “There is strong incentive for wireless service carriers to encourage their sales representatives to offer service and feature demonstrations to prospective cell phone and tablet customers.

“Not only does this increase the likelihood that customers will select the right device for their needs, it proactively answers questions that may otherwise arise after the sales transaction. Identifying the types of features and services a customer is seeking at the point of purchase can reduce future callbacks to customer care, while improving the overall customer experience and long-term loyalty.”

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