Satisfaction with online retail sites hits all time high

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Online consumer satisfaction with retail sites has reached an all time high in the latest eRetail Benchmark study, with pure-play retailer Javari achieving the top score.

"Satisfaction with retail sites is rising as retailers continually strive to make the online journey as seamless as possible for customers."

The study, from eDigitalResearch, found that a combination of improved online usability, as well as better offline practices has helped push the overall top score 3% above the last wave of results in January 2011 and reach an all time high in the study’s recent history.

Derek Eccleston, research director at eDigitalResearch, explains, “This is an exciting time for online retail. Satisfaction with retail sites is rising as retailers continually strive to make the online journey as seamless as possible for customers. Our consumer research already indicates that more and more people are shopping online as we continue to witness the growing MEcommerce consumer trend, where consumers now have the power to dictate to retailers where, when and how they want to shop. It is therefore essential that retailers continue to invest in online operations in order to create an attractive, easy to use and practical website that encompasses everything that consumers have come to expect."

Javari topped the overall league tables for a second time after only entering the study eight months ago. Shoppers are continually impressed with the websites functionality, including relevant search results and detailed product pages. Javari also provides industry best practice for their offline processes, coming top in delivery, telephone and email customer service.

The results show that top performing areas of the online customer journey remains the search and browse sections with shoppers continually impressed with accurate search results and intuitive category filters. Retailers who are integrating predictive text in keyword searches are those that continue to perform well in this area, benefitting from developing search technology.

The study also highlights improving offline practices, with telephone customer service now scoring higher than some key areas of the online journey, including the home page and first impressions. The results found that some online retailers are now providing responsive and helpful telephone customer contact with intuitive and well received features, such as Javari’s ring back service, taking the overall telephone customer service score to 93%, 2% above the overall top score for the homepage and on a par with the website purchase section.

Derek Eccleston, Research Director at eDigitalResearch, explains, “Customer service remains a crucial aspect of online retail. Our in-depth consumer research shows that customers expect the same experience online as they do on the high street, including customer contact. Our previous eRetail Benchmark results have highlighted that this hasn’t always been the case, with phone calls being left unanswered and email queries ignored. Telephone and email customer service often act as the only point of personal contact for online customers and it is essential that they provide a friendly and helpful lasting impression if retailers want to encourage repeat purchases, especially as the online market space becomes more and more crowded.”

For your copy of the benchmark report, including full league tables, please complete this short survey: https://ecustomeropinions.com/survey/survey.php?sid=640419204. Alternatively, for access to this report, as well as eDigitalResearch’s previous retail and mobile benchmark’s, sign up or log into http://www.edigitalresearch.com/benchmarking.

For further information, contact Lisa Bonczyk on 01489 772920, or email: lisa.b(at)edigitalresearch(dot)com

Methodology:

  •     An eMysteryShopper survey was conducted to compare the customer journey of 51 UK retail websites. The fieldwork was carried out using the eMysteryShopper Panel of internet users during March through to April 2011. The benchmark measures included:

o    First Impressions (Homepage)
o    Search – Navigation and Keyword
o    Items Found (Product Pages)
o    Shopping Basket
o    Purchase
o    Registration / Login
o    Delivery
o    Returns / Refunds
o    Customer contact – Telephone
o    Customer contact - Email

About eDigitalResearch:

eDigitalResearch is a leading provider of digital market research, enabling customers to make critical business decisions with the benefit of comprehensive consumer insight and informed direction. eDigitalResearch possesses a unique combination of research expertise, marketing background, web technology and knowledge of the cross-channel consumer. As well as providing invaluable research data, the modules of our fully integrated research system - ratings, surveys, panels, communities and forums - can combine to provide holistic analytics and essential market-leading insight. This gives our clients the power, confidence and backup to make crucial decisions on key aspects of their business including product range, marketing, customer service, supply chain, even basic positioning. http://www.edigitalresearch.com

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Lisa Bonczyk
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