WebSideStory: Repeat Visitors Eight Times Likelier to Purchase

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Repeat visitors are eight times more likely to click the order button than new visitors, according to new data released by analytics firm WebSideStory Inc.

The San Diego company claimed repeat visitors to business-to-consumer sites in the first three months of 2006 had a conversion rate of 12.61 percent versus 1.55 percent for new visitors.

The data was pulled from the WebSideStory Index, a statistical barometer of trends tracked from daily visitors to sites using the company's HBX Analytics offering.

WebSideStory claims customer loyalty is key in the computers and electronics category. Repeat visitors in this area were 16 times likelier to buy than new visitors, with conversion rates of 23.13 percent in computers and 1.49 percent in electronics.

However, visitor loyalty was less of a factor for shoppers at apparel sites. The conversion rate for repeat visitors in this category, at 7.56 percent, was only six times higher than new visitors' 1.37 percent.

WebSideStory explained the dichotomy by pointing out that consumers are more likely to buy apparel online without the elaborate thinking process required of a computer or television purchase.

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