An Online Shopper Bill of Rights

Share this content:

Online shopping this holiday season is slated to ring up record revenues. And with the high price of gasoline and the extreme weather we've been seeing, expect shoppers to turn to the Internet for an increasing part of their holiday budget.

That is, if customers are happy with their online shopping experiences.

According to JupiterResearch's 2006 report, "U.S. Online Retail Forecast, 2005-2010," e-commerce will climb from $81 billion in 2005 to $144 billion by 2010. But that figure hinges on a few conditions. Patti Freeman Evans, the report's author, cautioned that Internet customers are not just opening their wallets, they also are demanding more. Retailers can expect an increasingly experienced population of online shoppers who are smarter about finding free shipping and deeper discounts, she noted.

Moreover, though new people will join the online world, it will get harder to convert larger numbers to online shopping. Ms. Evans urges that merchants who want to continue to increase revenue need to induce existing online shoppers to spend more each year. The adage that repeat customers are the best customers is equally true of online traffic.

So, to keep customers coming this holiday season and beyond, it's time to introduce core beliefs and practices across Internet commerce to ensure great service and product satisfaction in every consumer online retail transaction.

Here is a suggested "Online Shopper's Bill of Rights." Its tenets are based on our own experiences as fervent Internet shoppers. We encourage our partners, colleagues and competitors in retail to join us in making good online shopping experiences an inalienable right for all customers. Online shoppers deserve the right to:

• Find the best prices available, including the use of comparison shopping.

• Know the full price when considering a purchase. Hidden shipping and handling fees do not foster online consumer trust.

• Obtain detailed, relevant product information efficiently and in plain language.

• Access independent product reviews. Consumers should be able to easily research from various objective information sources to make the best decisions.

• Obtain unbiased customer opinions. Trustworthy retail sites should post all customer feedback and show how they responded to problems. It's how retailers respond that makes for a long-term shopping relationship.

• Trust that their personal information is zealously protected. Abusing customer privacy will damage our industry like nothing else.

• Receive fast responses when they order and when they complain.

• Experience an easy, friendly user interface. If customers wanted to be hassled trying to shop, they'd be out driving around a crowded mall parking lot.

• Shop at their own pace. If customers are ready to check out, make it easy to complete a transaction. If they want to browse, make it easy to cruise your site.

close

Next Article in Multichannel Marketing

Sign up to our newsletters

Company of the Week

Since 1985, Melissa has helped thousands of companies clean, correct and complete contact data to better target and communicate with their customers. We offer a full spectrum of data quality solutions, including global address, phone, email, and name validation, identify verification - available for batch or real-time processes, in the Cloud or on-premise. Our service bureau provides dedupe, email/phone append and geographic/demographic append services for better targeting and insight. For direct mailers, Melissa offers easy-to-use address management/postal software, list hygiene services and 100s of specialty mailing lists - all with competitive pricing and excellent customer service.

Find out more here »

Career Center

Check out hundreds of exciting professional opportunities available on DMN's Career Center.  
Explore careers in digital marketing, sales, eCommerce, marketing communications, IT, data strategies, and much more. And don't forget to update your resume so employers can contact you privately about job opportunities.

>>Click Here

Relive the 2017 Marketing Hall of Femme

Click the image above