Multichannel merchants score well in online customer satisfaction

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The Web sites for Netflix and QVC have the highest satisfaction scores with consumers and PCConnection and PCMall are the lowest scorers in ForeSee Results' "Top 100 Online Retail Satisfaction Index," being released today.

The report is based on more than 20,000 surveys of consumers who visited the top 100 revenue-grossing retail Web sites as identified by Internet Retailer. Using the University of Michigan's American Consumer Satisfaction Index, the study measures how well these sites deliver the kind of experience consumers want on a 100-point scale.

Other customer favorites include DrsFosterSmith.com (81), LLBean.com (79) and Apple.com (79).

There were other multichannel merchants' Web sites at the top of the list including TigerDirect.com (79); Cabelas.com (78); MusiciansFriend.com (78); OrientalTrading.com (78); VictoriasSecret.com (77); BassPro.com (76); Crutchfield.com (76); and JCPenney.com (76).

The study also found that online customer satisfaction can be an important driver of customer loyalty and word-of-mouth recommendations. Four of the top five retailers from a satisfaction perspective also have the highest "likelihood to purchase next" scores. Netflix, QVC and Amazon, which had the three highest satisfaction scores, also had the highest "likelihood to recommend" scores. Finally, online shoppers of the top-performing sites are 15 percent more satisfied with retailers overall than are customers of the lower-scoring sites.

The highest aggregate scoring category is books, CDs and DVDs, led by Netflix with a score of 85. Barnes & Noble's site, BN.com, is a standout among bricks-and-mortar retailers with a score of 82. Amazon.com, which posted a score of 83, is still a large player even though it has expanded far beyond books and is categorized with mass merchants as well.

Filling out the low end of the list are HomeDepot.com, Macys.com and NeimanMarcus.com, all of which posted a score of 69. NeimanMarcus also suffered the biggest drop in the index, with its score dropping 9 percent from a year ago.

Nordstrom.com leads high-end retailers with a score of 73, while SaksFifthAvenue.com made its first appearance on the list with a score of 70. Leading the way for department stores are JCPenney.com and Target.com, both of which scored a 76. Walmart.com posted a 75 and Sears.com a 72.

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