May 30, 2008, 12:00 AM

Satisfied and Buying

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Books/CDs/DVDs tops the product category rankings with a score of 76. But, only 2 points separate this score from the low score of 74 for apparel & accessories and computers & electronics, showing that no one product category is truly a stand-out.

This year manufacturers rebounded to tie for the top channel ratings with the catalog/TV merchants category, improving an impressive 3 points to a score of 76. Retail chains improved 1 point from last year, the second year that this category has been on par with Internet only, or pure plays, which traditionally have held a lead.

Online retailers have many metrics at their disposal. The challenge is finding and using meaningful metrics that both assess current performance and predict success. Customer satisfaction and purchase intent are two key performance metrics that foreshadow a retailer’s success.

Larry Freed is president and CEO of ForeSee Results.

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