December 29, 2010, 9:44 AM

Amazon and Netflix are most pleasing

Those two e-commerce sites take the top spots in a ForeSee customer satisfaction survey.

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Consumers rated their overall satisfaction with top e-retailers slightly lower this holiday season, giving 41 leading e-commerce sites a grade of 78 on a 100-point scale, down from 79 last year, according to ForeSee Results. The customer satisfaction measurement firm arrived at its scoring through more than 10,000 consumer surveys collected between Nov. 29  and Dec. 15.

Amazon.com Inc. and Netflix Inc. tied for the No. 1 spot with 86 points each. Last holiday, Amazon was No. 1 and Netflix was No. 2.  In the Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide, Amazon is No. 1 and Netflix is No. 14.

Ten other e-retailers scored 80 points or more this holiday, a score ForeSee considers excellent. Those retailers are, in descending order, QVC, Avon, L.L. Bean, Newegg, Apple, eBay, Musician’s Friend, Vistaprint, Walmart and Williams-Sonoma. The index measures consumers’ satisfaction with the top 40 retailers as ranked in Internet Retailer’s Top 500 Guide. However ForeSee also inserts eBay, an online marketplace not in The Top 500 Guide, in the sites it measures.

Seventeen e-retailers scored below the average satisfaction score of 78 this year. Consumers rated that they were least satisfied with TigerDirect (73), Sears (74), OfficeMax (75), Macys (75), and Home Depot (75). “Any retailer falling below 78 is risking loyalty, recommendations, sales and market share to competitors who score higher,” ForeSee Results writes in its report.

Highly satisfied visitors to e-retail sites say they are 60% more committed to the brand overall and 61% more likely to purchase from the retailer online than dissatisfied visitors are, according to ForeSee. Satisfied visitors also are 64% more likely to recommend the retailer than are dissatisfied visitors. “There are few investments aside from improving customer satisfaction that would have the same impact on sales, loyalty and recommendations,” says Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee Results.

Two e-retailers improved on their 2009 satisfaction scores by three points each, the largest point gain earned this holiday season. L.L. Bean, which already earned an excellent rating last holiday with a score of 80, raised its score to 83. HSN earned a 79 this holiday.

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