ForeSee Holiday Retail Report: Supermarket Chain Surpasses Apple Store; Amazon and L.L.Bean Lead in Customer Satisfaction

ForeSee Holiday Retail Report: Supermarket Chain Surpasses Apple Store; Amazon
                  and L.L.Bean Lead in Customer Satisfaction

Multichannel retailers win while customer loyalty wanes for biggest U.S.
retailers; satisfaction stagnates across Web and Mobile channels during 2013
holiday season

PR Newswire

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 7, 2014

ANN ARBOR, Mich., Jan. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --ForeSee, the global leader in
technology-driven customer experience analytics, today released the ForeSee
Experience Index (FXI): 2013 U.S. Retail Edition. Based on data gathered
during 2013's holiday shopping season, the report features company-level and
channel-specific customer satisfaction analysis for the top 100 U.S.
retailers.

(Logo:http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20110819/DE54780LOGO )

This five-part report goes beyond the annual ForeSee E-Retail Satisfaction
Index (U.S. Holiday Edition) produced for the last eight years, which measured
customers' Web and Mobile experiences with e-retailers. The new FXI Retail
report offers a comprehensive view of satisfaction at the Company-level and
across every applicable sales channel including Store and Contact Center as
well as Web and Mobile. The study is based on more than 67,600 surveys
collected between Nov. 29 and Dec. 17, 2013, for the 100 biggest U.S.
retailers as reported by the Fortune 500 and Internet Retailer's top 100
websites. Retailers listed in this report include Amazon, Dell, L.L.Bean,
Apple, QVC, Keurig, Costco, Ralph Lauren, Victoria's Secret, Barnes & Noble,
eBay, Groupon, Family Dollar, Best Buy, Toys "R" Us, Zulily and others.

"The results of ForeSee's most comprehensive holiday report provide
interesting insights into the holiday shopping experience," said Larry Freed,
president and CEO of ForeSee. "The data shows that customer loyalty for
retailers is on the decline, yet consumers are satisfied with the top retail
brands and had the best experience with retailers who mastered the
multichannel experience. While Amazon continues to reign supreme across
multiple channels, several retailers have identified critical drivers for
increased sales and have made great strides to improve the multichannel
customer experience, setting themselves up for success into 2014."

Key Findings:

  oCompany-level: retailers that satisfied the most (and least) during 2013's
    holiday shopping season:

       oAmazon (90) and L.L.Bean (90) tied for the highest Company-level
         satisfaction. While this is the first time ForeSee has studied
         Company-level satisfaction during the holidays, the L.L.Bean website
         has scored an 80 or above in Web satisfaction eight out of the nine
         years measured, and Amazon has topped the Web satisfaction list every
         year. Amazon and L.L.Bean set the bar for customer experience
         excellence.
       oPriceline.com came in with the lowest Company-level satisfaction
         (76), as well as one of the lowest Web satisfaction (75) and Mobile
         satisfaction (73) scores.

  oStore channel: Apple, which prides itself on stellar Apple Store customer
    experiences, lost to the supermarket chain Publix Super Markets in Store
    satisfaction with a score of 86 – three points higher than Apple's score
    of 83.

       o53 percent of retailers register merchandise as the main priority
         affecting in-store purchase, and 35 percent register service.

  oWeb channel: While Amazon (88) led the pack for Web satisfaction, some
    retail sites such as vitacost.com (86), keurig.com (84) and llbean.com
    (84) are creeping closer. Basspro.com (83) and crateandbarrel.com (80)
    tied for the most improved sites with seven-point gains in customer
    satisfaction from last year.

       o57 percent of retailers identify merchandise as the top driver
         affecting customer web experience, compared to only 7 percent that
         register price.

  oMobile channel: In a category that saw satisfaction stagnate this year,
    Walmart (80) was the only company to experience a significant increase of
    more than three points in Mobile satisfaction, seeing a five-point
    improvement from 2012's score. Again, Amazon led the pack with a Mobile
    satisfaction score of 87.

       o38 percent of retailers register functionality as the top priority
         affecting the mobile customer experience, above both merchandise (34
         percent) and content (31 percent).

  oContact Center channel: QVC (88) beat Amazon (85) in Contact Center
    satisfaction by three points. Costco (85) and O'Reilly Auto Parts (85)
    tied Amazon in Contact Center satisfaction.

       o55 percent of retailers record knowledge of the customer service
         representative as the top priority affecting the customer contact
         center experience.



Holiday Satisfaction Trends:

  oCustomers' loyalty wanes: 12 percent of customers surveyed said they only
    considered one company when making a purchase.

       oAlmost half (49 percent) of people reported that the company they
         visited was one of several companies they considered equally when
         shopping.

  oMultichannel retailers satisfy shoppers: The most satisfied shoppers this
    holiday season were the ones that interacted with a retailer across
    multiple channels.

       oThe majority of customers (57 percent) were single-channel users with
         a satisfaction score of 82, and the remaining 43 percent who used two
         or more channels to engage with the company recorded a satisfaction
         score of 85.

  oCustomer satisfaction during 2013's holiday shopping season is predictive
    of 2014 business success for retailers: When comparing the future
    behaviors of highly satisfied customers (with satisfaction scores of 80 or
    higher) to less satisfied customers (with satisfaction scores of 69 or
    less), ForeSee found that highly satisfied customers this holiday shopping
    season report being:

       o71 percent more likely to prefer the company to others
       o57 percent more likely to retain loyalty to the company
       o72 percent more likely to purchase additional products or services
         from the company
       o64 percent more likely to purchase next time they are in the market
         to buy similar products or services
       o63 percent more likely to give a positive recommendation
       o60 percent more likely to trust the company

Analysis of Findings – Opportunities and Risks:

  oCustomers view their experience with a company as an experience with a
    company, not as an experience with an individual channel. While most
    retailers still operate in silos, those retailers who have developed a
    cohesive multichannel strategy to encourage shoppers to engage across
    channels have a prime opportunity in 2014 for future success.
  oStore customer service is crucial to retailers' bottom lines. Online
    commerce is growing nearly five times faster than retail overall, but
    accounts for roughly 14 percent of retail sales during November and
    December (source: Comscore). Since customer service is one of the primary
    drivers of in-store satisfaction, retailers that provide the best in-store
    service will reap the rewards. 
  oWeb and Mobile stagnation presents risks for retailers. In a fiercely
    competitive holiday retail environment where 12 percent of customers only
    considered one retailer when making a purchase, retailers cannot afford to
    let their Web and Mobile satisfaction stagnate. Retailers looking to gain
    an edge in customer loyalty must make improvements to the primary drivers
    of satisfaction to find ways to recover the Web and Mobile customer
    experience in 2014.

Resources:

  oForeSee Experience Index (FXI): 2013 U.S. Retail Edition

About ForeSee

As a pioneer in customer experience analytics, ForeSee continuously measures
satisfaction across customer touchpoints and delivers critical insights on
where to prioritize improvements for maximum impact. Because ForeSee's
superior technology and proven methodology connect the customer experience to
the bottom line, executives and managers are able to drive future success by
confidently optimizing the efforts that will achieve business and brand
objectives. The result is better business for companies and a better
experience for consumers. Visit www.foresee.com for customer experience
solutions and original research.

Contact:
Sarah Allen-Short, 734-327-3852
sarah.allen-short@foresee.com

SOURCE ForeSee

Website: http://www.foresee.com
 
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