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Customer Satisfaction Gap Between Mobile and Traditional Retail Websites Narrows

...Just a two-point difference exists between satisfaction levels online and mobile...

LONDON, Feb. 27, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- ForeSee, the leading customer experience analytics firm, today announced the findings of its latest mobile shopping report and revealed that the customer satisfaction gap between mobile and the more traditional retail websites is narrowing.

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The research, carried out across nearly 10,000 surveys, examined satisfaction scores from visitors to 40 of the largest (as defined by the IMRG) UK mobile online retail websites, apps and tablets in the UK. It serves to investigate the impact mobile shopping has had on those retailers, and provides valuable insight on how UK shoppers are using their mobiles to browse, research and purchase goods.

Key research findings:

1. Mobile satisfaction versus traditional websites – Retail mobile experiences still slightly trail traditional online retail websites with regard to customer satisfaction, however the gap is narrowing. Customer satisfaction with traditional online retail websites in the UK scored a 74 on the study's 100-point scale, up from one point last year, and mobile experiences ranked slightly lower with 72—but a commendable two-point increase from last year.

Customer Satisfaction in the UK

2010

2011

2012

Retail Websites

72

73

74

Retail Mobile Sites and Apps

67

70

72

Implication: Consumers who use their mobile devices to engage and transact with companies are fairly happy doing so, and if a company is not providing a mobile experience, then it is missing out on a growing segment of customers that could otherwise make purchases and recommendations.

2. Multiple device shopping – Most consumers (87 per cent) are still using their home computer (or PC) as the main device with which to shop online, but one in five shoppers are using either a mobile phone or smartphone or a tablet device to access a retailer's website, mobile site or mobile app. Mobile phone users are also more satisfied with their experience than home computer users are (77 vs. 74).

Which of these devices did you use
to shop with this company?

% of
Respondents

Satisfaction

A home computer

87%

74

A computer at my work

12%

74

A computer at another location
(public library, friend's house)

5%

76

A mobile phone or smartphone
(to access a website, mobile site, or app)

12%

77

A tablet or iPad

9%

75

Another device

3%

67

Implication: Businesses need to measure satisfaction accurately across the multiple touch points that shoppers are now using to interact with them. They especially need to be prepared for the increasing use of tablet devices, which are emerging as a preferred way for users to shop.

3. An increase in popularity of "showrooming" (where customers visit a store to look at the merchandise in person, but then shop online—often via mobile—to get a better price through a competitor) – Forty per cent of the mobile users measured reported using their mobile phone while in a retail store; however, it isn't always to check price comparison sites or competitors—many shoppers are using mobiles to check that company's own website. However, it is true that there is a smaller, less satisfied group of mobile shoppers who are accessing a competitor's site or app whilst in store.

How did you use your mobile phone
whilst in store? (Please select all that apply.)

% of Respondents

Satisfaction

I accessed the store's website

74%

75

I accessed a competitor's website

34%

73

I accessed a shopping comparison
website (Shopzilla.com, Shopping.com)

16%

72

I accessed the store's shopping app

16%

75

I accessed a competitor's shopping app

8%

71

Implication: Showrooming isn't necessarily a bad thing. Stores have an opportunity to keep their customers by providing a better mobile experience for them, but to do that, they must understand the needs of their own multichannel customer. If a mobile and/or store experience doesn't meet expectations, customers will go somewhere else.

4. What do shoppers use mobile sites for and are they satisfied? As a whole, users who accessed mobile sites or apps to make a purchase and/or compare products are highly satisfied. More than half of the respondents used a mobile site or app to look up price information and 32 per cent compared products.

How did you use the mobile site/app?

% of
Respondents

Satisfaction

To compare different products

32%

80

To look up price information about a product

51%

77

To look up product specifications

28%

78

To view product reviews

19%

79

To make a purchase

14%

80

To look up store information (location, hours)

7%

79

None of these

5%

72

Implication: By understanding how mobile shoppers are using their phones and tablets, retailers can decide what kind of functionality to prioritise and improve the experience for customers.

"It's plain and simple: companies that are not measuring the mobile customer experience are operating in the dark. It's time to turn on the lights," said Larry Freed, CEO at ForeSee. "Measuring mobile satisfaction is no longer an add-on for companies to consider. Phones and tablets are an integral nexus of online traffic and serve as companion channels to virtually every other customer touch point."

ForeSee's Senior Director of Mobile, Media and Entertainment Eric Feinberg added: "The mobile revolution is here and these companies—even the largest and best at what they do—cannot afford to waste time, effort and resources making poor decisions when it comes to managing their mobile experiences.

"Mobile is drastically changing the way today's multichannel, multidevice consumers are viewing and engaging with companies and business leaders can ill-afford to stand idle and watch the opportunity go by. If they measure mobile (and do it well) their customers will do most of the heavy lifting in helping them to create a successful mobile experience. They will help to identify the purpose of the visit, show you their likely next step, and tell you their location and the devices they use. They will also tell you what is working, what isn't, and what they would like to be able to do with your mobile experience. All you have to do is ask them."

About the Research

The ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index analyses mobile satisfaction, elements that impact satisfaction, future behaviours, and other key findings through the eyes of the consumer. The report concentrates exclusively on the mobile experiences with 40 of the largest UK mobile e-tailers (as defined by the IMRG) and serves as a great starting point for companies that want to benchmark their mobile performance against some of the best businesses in this category.

Nearly 10,000 surveys were collected from visitors to these 40 companies' mobile commerce apps and sites on phones and tablets from during November and December 2012. The study was conducted using a consumer panel. All scores are on a 100-point scale.

About ForeSee

As a pioneer in customer experience analytics, ForeSee continually measures satisfaction and delivers powerful insights on where to prioritise improvements for maximum impact. ForeSee applies its trusted technology across channels and customer touch points, including websites, call centres, brick-and-mortar locations, mobile experiences, and social media interactions. Because ForeSee's proven methodology measures satisfaction in a manner that is predictive of customer loyalty, purchase behaviour, future financial success, and even stock prices, executives and managers are able to drive future success by confidently prioritising the efforts that they know will achieve business goals.

Working across the public and private sectors, with deep expertise in a range of business and consumer industries, ForeSee combines the best in customer satisfaction measurement, proven predictive analytics, actionable usability analysis, and rich observational data to work with large and small organisations around the world. The results of measuring success through the customers' eyes are better outcomes for businesses and a better experience for consumers. Visit: www.foresee.com for customer experience solutions and original research.

Press Contact

Nikki Alvey, The PR Network
Tel: +44 (0) 7973 354 706
[email protected]

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