Survey: Nearly half of Americans delete apps without good customer support

Helpshift, a customer support industry firm, has announced the results of a survey conducted by Radius Global Market Research June 12-13, among adults ages 18-plus that explored Americans’ feelings about email, messaging and proactive customer support.

More than three-quarters of Americans (81%) use mobile apps—to check social media (66%), read the news (44%), play games (44%), order food (35%) and handle work-related tasks (22%). However, the vast majority of mobile app users (69%) report having problems with apps—27% on a daily or weekly basis.

Apps that don’t provide good customer support are more at risk of being deleted or ignored: nearly half (47%) of app users say they just delete apps that are frustrating and don’t provide any customer support. Others will: give the app a bad review (24%), trash the app to friends (19%); and complain about the app on social media (18%).

What’s more, the Helpshift survey shows that app users don’t want to have to exit the app to seek help over email. They want to communicate with customer service agents the way they communicate in their daily lives: over messaging.

More than half (59%) of Americans who use mobile apps prefer messaging to email, because they feel it is a more trustworthy form of communication. If an app offered live, in-app customer service, 46% would try it, 34% would use it, 23% would recommend the app to friends, and 16% would buy it for having this feature.

“Mobile apps that provide more sophisticated in-app support are more likely to enjoy stronger customer engagement and loyalty,” says Abinash Tripathy, founder and CEO of Helpshift. “These survey results underscore the point that people want to communicate with customer service agents the way they communicate with everyone else—through messaging and apps. That’s why in-app messaging is the superior form of customer support.”

What’s more, a significant majority of Americans (89%) say they recommend an app if they were proactively contacted inside an app by a customer support agent if they were experiencing a problem with an app.

The survey was conducted online within the United States by Radius Global Market Research on behalf of Helpshift June 12-13, 2017, among 2,170 adults 18+. The results were weighted to the U.S. census for age, gender, region and income.