Customer Satisfaction and Future Loyalty Greatly Improve When Device Features Are Demonstrated during the Retail Transaction

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AT&T Ranks Highest in Wireless Purchase Experience Satisfaction among Full-Service Carriers; Boost Mobile Ranks Highest among Non-Contract Carriers

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif: 14 August 2014 — When retail sales representatives demonstrate cell phone or tablet service and features to wireless customers prior to purchase, satisfaction improves considerably and the propensity to visit the same retailer again doubles, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Full-Service StudySM—Volume 2 and the J.D. Power 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Non-Contract StudySM—Volume 2, both released today. 

Now in their 11th year, the semiannual studies evaluate the wireless purchase experience of customers using any one of three contact channels: phone calls with sales representatives; visits to a retail wireless store; and online. Overall customer satisfaction with both full-service and non-contract carriers is measured across six factors (in order of importance): store sales representative; website; store facility; offerings and promotions; cost of service; and phone sales representative.

“There is strong incentive for wireless service carriers to encourage their sales representatives to offer service and feature demonstrations to prospective cell phone and tablet customers. Not only does this increase the likelihood that customers will select the right device for their needs, it proactively answers questions that may otherwise arise after the sales transaction,” said Kirk Parsons, senior director of telecommunications at J.D. Power. “Identifying the types of features and services a customer is seeking at the point of purchase can reduce future callbacks to customer care, while improving the overall customer experience and long-term loyalty.”

Overall satisfaction among wireless full-service customers who made a recent sales transaction is 792 (on a 1,000-point scale) and is 783 among non-contract wireless customers. AT&T ranks highest among full-service carriers, with an overall score of 801, followed closely by T-Mobile with a score of 796. Boost Mobile (800) ranks highest among non-contract carriers, followed by MetroPCS (793) and Virgin Mobile (791).


  • Overall satisfaction is significantly higher among customers whose sales representative offers a device demonstration (832) than among those who are not offered a demonstration during a store visit (711).
  • More than half (55%) of wireless customers indicate that they made a purchase from their carrier during the past 6 months. Of those making a purchase, 66 percent make their purchase in a store, while 24 percent purchase online and 10 percent call their carrier. 
  • Among customers who make their purchase in a store, 61 percent indicate that their sales representative demonstrated or explained the features on the devices they considered.
  • Nearly one-half (46%) of customers who receive a device demonstration during their in-store sales visit say they “definitely will” shop at the same retailer again, compared with just 23 percent of those who do not receive a demonstration.
  • Providing a demonstration is an opportunity for carriers to build loyalty among customers, as 37 percent of customers who receive a demonstration say they “definitely will not” switch their carrier, compared with 26 percent of those who do not receive a demonstration.
  • Satisfaction with sales representatives who explain or demonstrate a device’s operation during the point of sale is 843, compared with just 693 when representatives fail to offer a demonstration. 
  • On average, sales representatives spend approximately eight minutes demonstrating how to operate a new device. Total in-store transaction time among customers who receive a demonstration from their sales representative is less than among those who are not given a demonstration (54.6 minutes vs. 56.1 minutes, respectively).

The 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Full-Service Study—Volume 2 is based on responses from 10,079 wireless customers. The 2014 Wireless Purchase Experience Non-Contract Study—Volume 2 is based on responses from 5,322 wireless customers. Both semiannual studies are based on the experiences of customers who had a sales transaction with their current wireless carrier across retail, phone or Web channels within the past six months. The study was fielded from January 2014 through June 2014.

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