Reasons why customers dislike long hold times

Admin . 06th May, 2022 . 4 Min Read

Long wait periods are something that should be avoided at all costs when it comes to customer service. They have a significant impact on how customers perceive your brand.

With the importance of the customer experience growing by the day, ignoring the effect of hold times can be an expensive mistake.

According to the Accenture survey, more than half of respondents said they would take their business elsewhere due to bad customer service. Can any business afford to risk losing consumers because of the easily fixable problem of long hold times, especially as the cost of customer acquisition continues to rise?

Reasons why customers don’t want to be on hold.

The perceived wait time is longer than the actual wait time.

"The psychology of queuing is more important than the statistics of the wait itself," says Richard Larson, an MIT professor of queuing theory.

We have a tendency to believe that we have been holding the line for a longer period of time than we actually have. The time we think we'll be waiting is longer than the time we'll actually be waiting.

Getting lost in the jungle of voice menus and hold music is really annoying. While you're waiting, all you can think about is the problem you're phoning about. This only adds to your frustration and turns what could have been a minor issue into a large one.

Customers are preoccupied with other, more important tasks

Remember that your clients are humans, too! Additionally, clients may be unable to talk on a voice call for a variety of reasons, including being at work or on the go. The more time customers spend waiting on hold for customer service, the less time they have to accomplish other things. Customers want to know that you value their time, and being put on hold does not demonstrate this.

Customers are paying you, and they expect you to deliver.

Customers demand value for their money when they purchase your product or service. When clients contact you, it's critical that you do everything possible to make them feel as if their money was well spent. If you value your customer's business and want to retain it, the last thing you should ask them to do is wait on line for assistance.

Patience is a virtue, but it's not one you should try to instill in your customers.

Patience is a virtue is an old phrase that should not be pressed on your consumers. In most cases, your client's patience has virtually run out by the time they've called, waited on hold, answered the same questions numerous times, and eventually reached a human person in your contact center.

The average hold time for all businesses is currently about 56 seconds. Despite this, research shows that after about 40 seconds on hold, 15% of callers will hang up. As time passes, the number of customers leaving increases dramatically. More than 60% of clients would have abandoned the call by the time they reach the one- minute mark on wait. More than a third of these callers who hang up will never call back, according to research. These frightening numbers should prompt every company to consider what it can do to improve customer service call handling.

How this will affect the company

  • The ability to upsell - Nearly 75% of individuals believe they will spend more money with a company that has a history of good customer service.

  • Retention of customers- Existing customers said the ease with which they can work with a company online and over the phone is the second most critical factor that makes them feel like they received excellent service. They report that they want customer support staff to be knowledgeable and to respond to their inquiries. Customers do not like to be kept waiting. They will go if companies do not match their expectations.

  • New Customers/Leads - 51% of those polled responded that outstanding customer service is a criterion they consider before purchasing from a new firm.

  • Detractors - Customers are more likely to share a negative experience than a positive one, therefore each call is crucial. These individuals have a significant impact on the ability to acquire new clients.

  • Lost Sales- When a consumer encounters a terrible customer experience, 60% of customers claim they "changed their minds" about buying anything.

How multi-channel messaging can help to reduce the hold times

With everyone's attention focused on wait times and customer service, it's more vital than ever for businesses to ensure that they have the correct technology solutions in place for their customers. Brands can give immediate support by deploying an automated chat service using multi-channel messaging. This will not only improve a company's image with customers, but it will also improve the whole experience by eliminating long call wait times.

Many brands are finding it difficult to maintain the same level of customer care as before due to high call volumes and call center resourcing issues. As a result, businesses must use multi- channel messaging to give the service that customers expect.

Texting allows them to respond whenever it is convenient for them, leading in a substantial shift in customer service and expectations management. Using a multichannel messaging platform, you can keep all consumer discussions in one consolidated inbox.

Customers are irritated by having to repeat themselves to numerous support employees, and around 50% of people have abandoned a transaction due to bad customer service. All of your communications and social media queries are collected in one spot.

Your agents will have an easier time keeping track of your customers and their support requests using multi-channel messaging. Other agents can also examine previous chats and make internal notes for these tickets, which is quite useful. If the customer has contacted you through many methods, this will help to avoid confusion.

Using digital messaging to manage real-time resolution is more efficient and saves money. Through two-way dialogues, customers get the answers they need right now. Previous purchase information and important details can be used to drive multichannel communications.

Using integrated messaging allows for a better understanding of intent, allowing for more personalized messages to be delivered. Customers benefit from easy access to help, which is available right away through their preferred channels.


Long hold times have been a challenge for contact centers since their creation. Even as technology advances, consumers still want to speak with another human when they have a problem with a product or service. Allowing them this opportunity should not entail lengthy wait periods. Multi-channel messaging offers more complete and all-encompassing solutions, and it is the key to permanently reducing excessive wait times.

Please contact us if you'd like to learn more about how you can deliver a great experience for your consumers. Send an email to with your inquiry. Or, click here to find out more!