Trustpilot has revealed that UK utilities suppliers are leading the charge in improved customer service. Trustpilot’s latest Online Review Index has found that just under 86,000 reviews of businesses within the UK utilities sector have been submitted to the platform since April, with positive sentiment in reviews across the category having jumped 4% in the last quarter alone.
This jump far surpasses other major retail sectors such as Electronics & Technology and Fashion (which both dropped 1% respectively), Home & Garden (which dropped 3%), Money & Insurance (which remained the same) and Beauty & Wellbeing (which increased by 1%). This is the third time Trustpilot has published its quarterly Online Review Index; a deep dive into data on the platform to reveal customer sentiment towards different business sectors.
Across the whole of the UK utilities sector, the key words and topics driving the bulk of positive sentiment in reviews included ‘engineer’, ‘installation setup’, ‘staff’ and ‘solution’; suggesting that businesses delivering strong customer service are all the more appealing to consumers during this tough economic period and likely to maintain the loyalty of customers.
By contrast, pain points and key words mentioned by customers which drove negative sentiment in reviews included ‘meter readings’, ‘contact’, ‘debt’ and ‘payment’ - suggesting some businesses are still falling short of providing a quality service, often leading to painful payment processes and money worries for many consumers.
Where high costs remain an ongoing concern for consumers, and suppliers unlikely to offer costs significantly lower than the price cap, it’s clear that other deciding factors such as customer experience are likely to play an increasingly important role in consumers’ decision making, with many keen to find a supplier with a good reputation and customer service.
“As inflation continues to bite and place increased strain on households, the importance of earning - and maintaining - a trustworthy reputation among consumers has never been more crucial," said Mieke De Schepper, Chief Commercial Officer at Trustpilot. "Where businesses may be less able to compete on price, other differentiators such as customer service can really help an energy supplier set itself apart from competitors, so in this time of economic uncertainty, it’s reassuring to see improved sentiment in reviews of businesses across the sector on our platform.
“Increasingly, consumers are not just searching for the cheapest deal but are also looking for the best possible customer experience, seeking assurances from suppliers that they have their best interests in mind.”
Consumers can visit the category on Trustpilot to see the profile pages for utilities suppliers - including energy and water - to find out more and read the full breadth of positive and negative reviews, and can also use the search function to find more relevant information, by looking up key topics and topics, such as ‘installation’.