February 16, 2010, 12:00 AM

Customers are more satisfied with e-retailing than other e-commerce fields

Compared to the online travel and brokerage sectors and stores, consumers are more content with their web retailing experience, a new American Customer Satisfaction Index and Foresee Results poll finds.

Katie Evans

Managing Editor, International Research

Compared to the online travel and brokerage sectors and stores, consumers are more content with their web retailing experience, according to the newest American Customer Satisfaction Index and Foresee Results Inc.

The customer satisfaction score for online retailing in the past year was 83 on a 100-point scale, compared with 78.0 for online brokers, 77.0 for online travel and 76.0 for stores. “The dramatic increase in satisfaction with the e-retail industry over the last ten years has been driven largely by the success of pure-play e-retailers,” says Foresee CEO Larry Freed.

Among online retailers Netflix, No. 18 in the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide (a PDF version of the company’s financial and operating profile can be ordered by clicking on its name), had the highest customer satisfaction score at 87.0, followed by Amazon.com (No. 1) and Newegg.com (No. 9) at 86.0, respectively. Netflix gained two points over its previous annual score, while Amazon.com remained flat and Newegg dropped two points from 88.0.

Overall e-retail is the only industry in the e-commerce sector to score above 80, which is considered the threshold for excellence for the American Customer Satisfaction Index, says Foresee. "The retailers who are only selling online have, for the most part, paid better attention to customer needs and expectations and have worked to create a better online software experience for their customers,” says Foresee vice president of retail strategy Kevin Ertell.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index survey is a cross-industry survey of satisfaction with the quality of goods and services available in the United States. Foresee works with the ACSI index and the University of Michigan to interpret the results for various vertical markets, including Internet retailing.

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