Virgin tells banks to ‘stop talking, start tweeting’

Banks are failing to engage with customers online: Lloyds TSB is the only bank on the high street to provide customer service on Twitter.

Banks are failing to engage with customers online: Lloyds TSB is the only bank on the high street to provide customer service on Twitter.

According to a survey by Virgin Media Business, the UK's biggest high street banks are making significant progress in call centres.

But banks, including Barclays, Santander, RBS, NatWest, HSBC and Co-operative Bank, are missing out on thousands of opportunities to a month to strengthen customer relationships on the web.

Phil Stewart, Virgin Media Business's customer service director, said, "Whether you like it or not, social networking sites seem to be becoming the new sounding board for complaints about companies.

"In fact, research by the Institute of Customer Service recently found that nearly one in ten Brits expect businesses to have a presence on Twitter.

"With the country's high street banks being tweeted about 180 times a day on average, responding to customers on the web is clearly going to be challenging. But with 55% of people in the UK expecting a response to an online complaint within 24 hours, it's a challenge that the banks need to take up."

The survey found banks were being tweeted an average of 180 times a day. The average call centre waiting time was 74 seconds for consumers and businesses.

"Investing in the right technology and training will allow firms to respond to their customers quickly and consistently, regardless of how they choose to get in touch," added Stewart.


Computer Weekly says...

While British banks are failing to embrace social media platforms to improve customer services, US banks have been using Twitter for customer service since early last year.

Also see Top ten banks on Twitter.

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