A study comissioned by Right Now, a customer management company, reported that only 5% of Australians feel that a company has ever exceeded their online customer service expectations.

The study questioned 700 Australians about their online customer service expectations, finding that Australians are generally disappointed with the services provided by online retailers. In fact, one in five (22%) surveyed felt that the customer experiences provided online by Australian businesses fall short or do not meet their expectations at all.

80% of the respondents indicated that they would actively look for alternatives if a company did not live up to their online expectations. Of that figure, 30% indicated that they would stop doing business with the company altogether. 79% of those interviewed will be using online stores for their 2010 Christmas shopping.

With the Christmas season approaching, retailers should look to improving their online offerings. The study indicates that clearer and earlier information about delivery charges and easier access to information about products is what makes for an improved online experience.

Taking time to review where assistance and additional information may be required and what mechanisms can be added or refined to make the buying process smoother and interactions with customer services more satisfying will pay dividends in the end as we know the provision of exceptional customers experiences holds great influence over where a consumer places their business,” says Brett Waters, vice president Asia Pacific – South at Right Now.