Are we really so alone in our consumer complaints? The customer expects quality and satisfaction in every case. But what is the reality? The answers to these questions arrived after years of research and analysis, going beyond our own practical experience and looking at the research data of others.
Yes! We really hate to complain and if we have to complain, a very small percentage of people feel happy. When we go shopping, we hope for joy, peace and a valuable outcome. But when we are confronted with shortcomings, we suddenly feel disappointed and angry. This is the reason why, because of actions that destroy the expected result, the instinctive repulsion kicks in: we don’t want to see the reason for this feeling in our lives! As strange as it is to face this, it’s just like the reaction we have when we are disappointed in our fellow human beings.
Oxford Economics (founded in Oxford in 1981, as a joint commercial venture with the University of Oxford Business School and has since become a leader in global forecasting and analysis) has conducted extensive research on consumer complaints since 2014, and we would like to share some of the key findings.
UK consumers experienced nearly 380 million cases of consumer detriment in 2015, totalling £42.9 billion. This is a huge amount and equals 2% of UK consumer spending. This alone suggests that in relation to the trade complaints represented by this huge sum, 35% of consumers have suffered harm or run into one or more problems with their purchases.
The number of complaints about the financial, banking sector and banking products in the UK continues to rise. Because of the financial detriment caused by complaints, the Financial Ombudsman handled 300,000 financial complaints a year and the Financial Conduct Authority handled 2.04 million financial complaints in the first half of 2021.
Unresolved problems with financial services and products cost UK consumers £30 billion a year.
The UK statistics, described above, extrapolated globally and to other sectors where the potential for commercial and financial problems exists, could mean up to 40 billion complaints a year globally, estimated to result in up to £4.5 trillion of consumer harm.
In the UK in 2020, consumer complaints were estimated to have cost the public £1.23 trillion in consumer spending.
Our advocacy solution analyses; evaluates; provides a global response. It adapts proactively, responds quickly to deliver solutions that serve consumers. At the same time, it can respond in a timely and effective manner by identifying manufacturer defects in a wide range of products and by quickly analysing these and related complaints.
This not only protects the interests of consumers, but also provides useful feedback to service providers and helps retailers. It is a preventive process that identifies defects at the point of sale at the manufacturer or retailer before the purchase. Thus, protecting the interests of our consumer community. We buy. We complain. We assert our interests. It is an eternal cycle!
In all aspects of life, we expect quality, value and long-lasting benefits and experiences. It is an essential part of our quality of life that the products and services we get for our money provide real pleasure and a peaceful sense of achievement.
Conversely, when we lose this satisfaction we become anxious, disillusioned and even desperate. And our frustration can have a huge impact on our future decisions before any other purchase.
In the course of our everyday lives, we will react in ways determined by our life experiences and make good or not so good decisions. What is certain is that, in all cases, all people try to make good and prudent choices.
The question is when faced with a problem: will there be someone with whom we can talk things through and come up with a solution that will result in a solution to our problem?
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where a fellow human being you thought was so smart and ambitious was not at all understanding or open to solving such a matter? Have you ever seen a similar case? Or have you found yourself in such a situation and, knowing the costs, you have thrown the source of your annoyance to the ground rather than react meaningfully and seek a solution?
As uncomfortable as it is to complain, it is useful!
That’s what the Adhoc.Support community is good at: one complaint, instead of one case, one complainant, another complainant, then a third complainant and finally hundreds of complainants. Suddenly, the manufacturer is in trouble while you’ve just filed a product quality complaint online using the community’s dedicated form. We then process it, link it to similar cases, analyse it, and see what we can achieve together!
Your product quality complaint, which is free to submit, will link your complaint to the complaints of others. To submit, you must be a member of the Adhoc.Support advocacy community. Your complaint will also be linked, in terms of the product, distributor and manufacturer complained about, to complaints by others about similar products for which it would not otherwise be financially worthwhile to spend time complaining. The fact that it turns out that there are several, many, or a huge number of others involved in the same product complaint makes things better!
Whether in an official proceeding, or in a non-litigious, out-of-court proceeding, but also in a judicial or other official proceeding, the many complainants can act as a force in place of their otherwise individual complaints in such a case.