July 3rd, 2014 by Maria Minsker

As products blur and brand names loose their grandeur, it’s services that sell nowadays. The services economy is ushering in a market opportunity that represents over 50 percent of U.S. GDP (that’s nearly four trillion dollars, folks!), but that doesn’t mean it’s smooth sailing for online service providers. To stay afloat in a fluid space, it’s crucial to constantly re-evaluate and improve the service that’s being provided, and find ways to derive new value from an old offering. So how can brands keep up with the services economy? Here are the top ten stats to keep in mind, courtesy of Avangate, a commerce solution provider for online services.

1. Over 63 percent of U.S. adults use online services everyday. More than 50 percent are willing to pay for them.

2. Different factors influence consumers’ decision to pay for a service–free trials (for 58% of consumers), the option to cancel at any time (for 49% of consumers), and the ability to upgrade and add services at any time (for 33% of consumers) were most lucrative offers.

3. The emergence of the Internet of Things is allowing brands to package products and services together for greater value. Roughly 80 percent of consumers that buy wearable technology use it for fitness.

4. Over 55 percent of consumers would be more inclined to purchase wearables if they could extend their functionality with added services.

5. Unsurprisingly, customer support plays a huge role in the services economy. Among the top service complaints, unrelated services (for 54 percent of consumers), difficult to reach live support (for 49 percent of consumers), and inflexible purchasing options (for 41 percent of consumers) were the big offenders.

6. About 61 percent of consumers said that instant and 24/7 support was the biggest missing feature from online service support.

7. When trying to reach customer service, 62 percent prefer dialing a toll-free number…

8. And only 3 percent prefer social media.

9. Over 90 percent of consumers do not remember to update the credit card they keep on file with their online service providers…

10. And 40 percent find updating to be a hassle, and only do so when prompted.

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