Australian and New Zealand consumers have the bar set high when it comes to customer experience expectations, new research from Adobe reveals.

In a global survey which included over 1000 consumers from Australia and New Zealand (ANZ), Adobe found that 79% of ANZ consumers demand personalised experiences from organisations, while 66% are happy to engage with a completely automated experience if it is executed well.

The survey asked consumers to rate experiences on a scale from neutral (I would expect this) to strongly positive (this would delight me) and the scores were converted to a scale from 0 to 100.

According to the responses, consumers are most impressed with online retailers providing samples as part of their loyalty program (score 61), however almost half (48%) of the ANZ respondents indicated they have abandoned their carts because of a poor customer experience.

The report stated that experience deal breakers included a lack of return policies for those selling on a marketplace (score 47) and hidden fees (score 50).

Adobe Australia and New Zealand MD Suzanne Steele said that because of boom of online retailers in the region it makes sense that ANZ consumers' expectations have lifted.

"It’s no surprise that Australians and New Zealanders have high consumer expectations.

"In the past few years, we’ve seen an explosion of online businesses in the region, which has given consumers more choice than ever before.

"I believe we are at a crossroads, where managing customer experiences is becoming business critical.

"Organisations that listen to what their customers want and leverage data to deliver personalised, seamless experiences in real-time will be the ones that succeed in this increasingly competitive market," she said.

In terms of consumer demographics, the report found that consumers between the ages of 18 to 34 are less likely to abandon their carts due to a bad shopping experience, however they are more than twice as likely as older consumers to complain about a bad experience on social media or in an online review.

Although younger consumers are less likely to abandon their cart, they may not become repeat purchasers with 28% of young consumers and 38% of consumers aged 35+ indicating that they would stop buying from a company that delivered a bad experience.

The Adobe report suggests that the future of customer experience lies in time saving and convenience capabilities. The research showed that smart check-out lines at stores were seen as one of the most impressive technologies of the future.

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