As a consumer, it can be hard to find honest information about companies you want to purchase from. Can you trust the online reputation of some of these brands? Buying a product or service can be costly if you don’t research beforehand to check if an item lives up to its promise.
Consumers today are reporting a whole host of interactions with brands. Some of these are positive but a significant proportion demonstrate that customers are looking for honest feedback about products and services and sometimes find this information hard to find.
Shoppers also want businesses to take note of their problems and help with useful solutions, such as refunds, exchanges and an apology, with many turning to social media platforms to gain attention from the companies in question.
Online reviews can help clarify your situation and highlight the pros and cons of a product so you know what you’re getting. The PissedConsumer online review survey found that consumers have lots of opinions about how companies deal with reviews and complaints.
Here are some key insights from the PissedConsumer.com trends:
- Based on online reviews, the top locations for complaints in 2023 were the United States, India, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Australia.
- The top 5 companies consumers complained about were Amazon, Facebook, eBay, Temu, and Lyft.
- According to online review statistics, the most popular reason for complaints in 2023 was poor customer service.
- Top 3 solutions consumers were looking for refund, delivery, and an apology.
United States Citizens Leave the Most Online Reviews
The consumers who chose the PissedConsumer website to share their experience in 2023 were clear about the retail experiences they were having, demonstrating some interesting online review trends.
According to online review statistics, consumers came from all over the world, with the top 5 locations being the United States with 505, 461 reviews. This was followed by India with 103,564 and the UK with 51,641. Canada had 29,804 and Australia made 10,625 reviews overall.
One trend that developed was that of reviews from certain states. These are as follows:
- California: 50,856.
- Florida: 46,388.
- Texas: 42,291.
- New York: 34,253.
- Pennsylvania: 27,264.
It’s fair to say that consumers like to leave reviews for a wide variety of reasons, such as to make others aware of their experiences, highlight inadequate customer support or raise awareness about their customer service pain points.
Which Industries Do Consumers Complain About?
Auctions and marketplaces are the top industries for complaints, according to our online review survey. Media companies came in second, which suggests that consumers are having the most issues with online companies that may involve third-party sellers or service providers. This may make the whole process more complicated to navigate for consumers.
An example of the kinds of complaints consumers are making is this shopper whose account was locked and never received their Amazon package:
Have been waiting since Monday for my stuff, they closed my account and took money out of my bank. I have been calling and calling, my kid’s birthday is coming up and I have nothing - I sent them everything they ask for, still no response.
Amazon, as a marketplace, is included in the top industries consumers complained about in 2023 reviews:
- Auctions and marketplaces: 80,031 reviews.
- Media: 64.025 reviews.
- Footwear and clothing: 57,002 reviews.
- Dating and social networking: 42,167 reviews.
- Food delivery: 39,073 reviews.
Unsurprisingly, the biggest and most commonly used businesses are those with the highest levels of complaints in online reviews during the past year.
In fact, Amazon reviews were the highest at 23,514 during 2023. Amazon is one of the biggest global marketplaces, so it could be said that it isn’t surprising it has a higher level of feedback containing complaints.
On the PissedConsumer Amazon page, the company has a 3.1-star rating, with 47% likely to recommend them to a friend or colleague. Customers liked the convenience and fast delivery but disliked issues with the company’s support.
Facebook came second with 18,110 complaints in reviews during 2023. Facebook is also an international marketplace with many independent businesses and sellers operating on the platform, this may be a factor in the higher level of reviews.
The PissedConsumer Facebook page tells us that the platform has a 1.8-star rating based on customer reviews. Consumers are mostly dissatisfied with only 11% of users likely to recommend Facebook to a friend or colleague. Online reviews reflect that users like connections to friends and family but dislike the absence of responsive customer support.
Additionally, the online review survey indicates eBay as the 3rd most popular company for feedback during 2023. Evidence comes from the eBay reviews that are posted on PissedConsumer that show some consumers have struggled to successfully resolve issues through the company’s review management process.
Ebay has a similar profile on PissedConsumer with a 2.0 star rating based on 17,658 customer reviews. Only 20% of users would likely recommend eBay to a friend or colleague. Shoppers like pricing but had issues with unsatisfactory customer support, in a similar story to Amazon and Facebook.
Here are the companies with the largest amount of 2023 complaints in reviews.
Online retail has exploded over the last decade, and one new addition to the market is Temu. As it’s only been around for a few years, some consumers are not sure how secure shopping is with Temu, with many asking, “Is Temu safe?”
Regarding these retailers, the perspective on safe shopping and good customer service remains mixed. Consumers need to research any product they want to buy extensively, consulting online reviews and taking review trends into account.
Consulting a trusted online review platform and reading plenty of product reviews should give you a more balanced and informed understanding before making a purchase decision.
In particular, if you are about to buy with one of the most complained about companies in our online review survey, such as Amazon, Facebook, eBay or Temu, then visiting an online consumer reviews platform and reading through the most recent reviews should help you to understand the pros and cons of buying your desired product.
Most Frequent Reasons for Consumer Complaints
Insufficient customer service tops the complaints list for consumers who find businesses are letting them down by not listening or repairing inadequate service.
The vehicle hire company Lyft has notched up some critical reviews around their under-par support, such as this customer review from January 5th, 2024:
Had a Lyft scheduled for a week in advance to pick us up Christmas day at 1am. No driver was available and you left us stranded at the beach with no ride home.
This online review survey reveals some significant online review statistics around the frequent factors in complaints by consumers. The leading issues were poor customer service, price issues, scams, false advertising and poor quality.
What Solutions Do Customers Need?
According to the online review statistics, customers were looking for a variety of solutions to the problems they experienced with products and services. However, the major issues affecting customers were:
- Price reduction.
- Access to account.
This reviewer had an issue with Google, lost money and couldn’t get a refund or resolution to their pain point:
Okay you all have taken multiple transactions from me totalling over $50 dollars - please return my money back.
This customer’s preferred solution was a full refund, unfortunately, this has not happened as yet.
Most Popular Customer Reviews 2023
Review statistics indicate that the top 3 most popular reviews last year were about different companies and varying issues. However, one thing stands out in them all - a disappointment with consumer service.
To clarify, the top 3 most popular reviews in 2023 were about Lowes, Temu and Jet2, confirming that dissatisfaction can happen at any time with any company if they take their eye off the ball and don’t look after their customers’ needs.
A customer ordered a Lowes washer/dryer to be delivered. It wasn’t delivered on time, not everything was delivered, plus the driver dropped and damaged the product while delivering. Full review.
The consumer leaving a review about this company complained about the lack of support and the treatment of customers by Temu. The customer said they would take to social media to raise awareness. Full review.
The reviewer and partner were not allowed to board their flight as they were accused of being drunk. They have not received an apology or a refund. Full review.
Consumer Tips Heading into 2024
As many wise people have said - knowledge is power. That’s why doing the research, and reading the small print are great first steps. Plus, taking heed of legitimate, established sites that give honest feedback about businesses can also help you become a smarter consumer this year.
Here are some top tips to get you started:
- Spend time researching around the product you want to buy and the competition – are claims too good to be true? Trusted online review platforms can give you great advice before you make a purchasing decision.
- Don’t give in to salesperson pressure – only buy what you have planned to purchase.
- Always read the small print to make sure you don’t sign up for something you didn’t expect.
- Be cautious of offers that seem amazing – they may trick you into buying a product you don’t really need.
- Keep receipts, download online receipts and always store emails in a safe place so you have an email trail of evidence if a problem occurs.
An overwhelming number of consumers leave online reviews to help others and warn them if they have a negative experience.
This kind of supportive community is worth its weight in gold, and if you have any experiences to share, you are welcome to leave a review or share your story to get your issue resolved and support other consumers.
1. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide any legal, medical, accounting, investment or any other professional advice as individual cases may vary and should be discussed with a corresponding expert and/or an attorney.
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