The South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SAcsi) has remained unchanged from last year with consumers giving the mobile networks industry a satisfaction score of 76.7 out of 100.
The index, which surveyed 1,526 randomly selected customers of Cell C, MTN, Telkom Mobile – formerly 8ta – and Vodacom, also indicated that this year’s results show no clear industry leaders.
(READ MORE: S.Africa communications regulator slashes mobile call costs)
“The fact that there is no clear industry leader and that there has been little to no change in both industry and company satisfaction scores indicates that there is no differentiator in the market, and that the mobile network service providers will find it increasingly difficult to find sustainable competitive advantage to compete with,” said SAcsi founder and chair, Adré Schreuder.
“Without clear differentiation and lower levels of customer loyalty, it will contribute to the ease of switching to another service provider and the network service providers need to consider the possible implications of this.”
However, the industry satisfaction score for mobile telecoms retail stores dropped by 3.2 index points from last year to 71.6. This survey included customers of Altech Autopage Cellular, Cell C, MTN and Vodacom as well as Nashua Mobile and Telkom Direct.
(READ MORE: The 2014 mobile marketing boom)
“The decrease in overall satisfaction among the mobile telecoms retailers can be attributed to the fact that customer expectations of the quality of service are high and have increased since last year. Telecoms retailers have been unable to meet these expectations, let alone exceed them,” Schreuder said.
Vodacom maintained its industry leader position with a satisfaction score 2.1 per cent above the industry average while Cell C and MTN scored on par with the industry.
“Vodacom exceeds customer expectations and boasts the highest customer retention and customer loyalty scores in the industry, contributing to its high overall satisfaction score,” Schreuder added.
The American Customer Satisfaction Index, with which the SAcsi holds a licence, also revealed that South Africa is the international benchmark for mobile network service providers, beating countries like Portugal, the UK, South Korea, the USA, Singapore and Brazil.