Customer satisfaction research firm ForeSee released its Holiday E-Retail Satisfaction Index for this year, and the overall score for online retailers was 78 on a 100-point scale, identical with last year’s reading. The most surprising change, perhaps, is Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) drop out of the top five in customer satisfaction. Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) once again led all online retailers with a score of 88, again identical with last year’s score for the retailer.
ForeSee’s CEO said:
This year, we’re seeing that even some of the largest companies in the country are at risk if they lose sight of customer satisfaction. Satisfaction with the customer experience, when measured correctly, is the most important predictor of future success, and while Amazon clearly gets it, Apple stumbles from their usual focus on the customer experience.
Apple’s four-point slide, from 84 to 80, dropped the company into a tie for eighth place, along with Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ), Kohl’s Corp. (NYSE: KSS), Netflix Inc. (NASDAQ: NFLX), Walgreen Co. (NYSE: WAG), and Victoria’s Secret, a division of Limited Brands Inc. (NYSE: LTD).
The biggest decliner this year was J.C. Penney Co. Inc. (NYSE: JCP), down 6 points, from 84 to 78, in a multiple-way tie with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT), Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), Costco Wholesale Corp. (NASDAQ: COST), and Home Depot Inc. (NYSE: HD).
The largest gains in customer satisfaction came at Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) and HSN Inc. (NASDAQ: HSNI), both up five points. L.L. Bean’s score rose four points, and Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT) and Office Depot Inc. (NYSE: ODP) both improved by three points.
Holiday online shopping is rising at a much faster pace than customer satisfaction with the online shopping experience. How closely a customer’s experience is correlated to satisfaction with prices is not a subject of the research, but it’s hard not to believe that prices don’t figure into a consumer’s satisfaction at all.