While retail Web sites did a slightly better job of satisfying customers this holiday season, some of the biggest names in retail ranked among the laggards in customer satisfaction, according to a study released today.
The sites with the best customer satisfaction were Netflix, Amazon, L.L. Bean, QVC, and Apple, according to ForeSee Results' Top 40 Online Retail Satisfaction Index. The research company used the methodology of the University of Michigan's American Customer Satisfaction Index to analyze surveys of 1.6 million consumer households conducted between Nov. 28 and Dec. 19. Respondents had visited at least one of the top 40 sites (based on sales volume) within the past 14 days.
Netflix received the highest ranking, 86, out of a possible 100 points, getting good scores in all four of the areas rated by online shoppers: site experience, merchandise, brand, and price. The aggregate score for the group of 40 was 75, up 1.4% from the preceding year. Rounding out the top 10 sites for customer satisfaction were Old Navy, Quixtar, HP Shopping, New Egg, and BN.
Yet many sites scored in the low 70s or high 60s. The 10 worst-performing sites, according to the index, were CDW, Costco, CompUSA, Toys "R" Us, PC Connection, Overstock, Macy's, Gateway, Buy, and Wal-Mart. CDW, an online computer store with a score of 68, scored low in all four categories, particularly price and brand, according to the report. Costco's lowest score was in merchandise, and CompUSA's scores were low across the board.
Among the most improved sites from 2005 (this is the survey's second year) are Sears, from 68 to 73; J.C. Penney, 71 to 76; Old Navy, 74 to 79; Sony Style, 69 to 73; Target, 70 to 74; and HP Shopping, 74 to 78.