US electronics retailer Etronics.com, computer giant Dell and book seller Barnes & Noble provide some of the worst customer service around, a study has claimed.
The aim of the survey, undertaken by customer service ratings firm StellaService, was to see how long it took the largest 100 online retailers to answer the phone or provide customers with an email response to their queries.
In the telephony category, it revealed that Etronics came in bottom by not even bothering to answer the phone at all, while Barnes & Noble came in second from bottom by making customers wait for an average of eight minutes.
On the email front, Dell took 65 minutes to respond, although Spiegel.com, homeware provider Crateandbarrel.com and catalogue firm Fingerhut.com were worse.
Jordy Leiser, StellaService’s chief executive said: "With prices and product selection no longer a key differentiator, customer service has become the best way for online retailers to stand out in the marketplace."
DisneyStore.com, meanwhile, was the only website that ranked in the top 10 for both email and telephone support. Among the largest 10 online retailers, Amazon.com was the best for average call hold time and fifth for average email response.