ANN ARBOR — ForeSee Thursday launched the ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index: Retail Edition Thursday at the Mobile Marketing Summit in New York City.
Using ForeSee’s scientific methodology, the report creates the benchmark for customer satisfaction with the retail mobile experience, including smartphones and tablets.
Long considered the standard bearer for online customer satisfaction, retail giant Amazon extends its dominance onto the mobile platform, according to a new index measuring the customer experience of websites and apps on Internet-enabled mobile devices. Avon and Apple round out the top three companies on the inaugural release of the ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index.
“The mobile platform is maturing much faster than the web in its early days, and more consumers are interacting with companies and brands via mobile devices every day,” said Larry Freed, President and CEO of ForeSee. “Customers experience the web differently on mobile devices, and companies that do not measure the mobile experience miss an opportunity to solidify customer loyalty and risk losing customers to companies that do.”
Overall satisfaction with the mobile experiences of 20 of the largest online retailers registers 79 on the Index’s 100-point scale, with scores ranging from 76 to 84. Almost half of the measured retailers score 80 or above, which ForeSee considers to be a benchmark for excellence. Amazon sets the bar at 84, followed by Avon (83) and Apple (82).
ForeSee, which measures satisfaction across multiple channels, finds that the mobile web experience for retail lags traditional retail web satisfaction significantly. Web sites appear fairly uniformly across standard PCs and laptops. But among mobile devices, there are dozens of different screen sizes, operating systems, hardware specifications, and loading speeds. This reality makes it difficult for companies to provide a uniform standard experience to its customers across platforms. In a comparison of mobile satisfaction scores to web satisfaction (as reported on ForeSee’s Online Retail Satisfaction Index in Spring 2012), nearly all of the top retailers perform better on traditional websites.
“Consumer expectations of the mobile experience are set by their experience on PCs and laptops. But where there are limitations on screen size and configuration, there are advantages to the touchscreen interface first popularized by Apple’s iPhone and iPad,” said Freed. “If companies can innovate and optimize the mobile platform, there’s no reason the mobile experience can’t surpass the Web.”
When compared to dissatisfied customers, satisfied customers are 69 percent more likely to make a purchase using their mobile device, 72 percent more likely to to recommend the retailer, and 58 percent more likely to visit the mobile website or app again.
“Satisfaction is the most important customer metric companies can track because it is forward looking and a key driver of behaviors retailers care most about: purchases, recommendations, and loyalty,” said Eric Feinberg, ForeSee Senior Director of Mobile, Media & Entertainment. “The ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index will be measuring other industries with a strong mobile presence, establishing a uniform benchmark for the mobile experience and indicating which companies need to do more to increase satisfaction that will result in desired consumer behavior that impacts the bottom line.”
Other key findings from the retail edition of the ForeSee Mobile Satisfaction Index include:
* App users were slightly more satisfied (80) than mobile web users (79). 68 percent used a retailer’s mobile website, while 32 percent used a retailer’s app.
* The highest app usage among measured companies was for Netflix (59 percent), eBay (53 percent), Groupon (52 percent), and Walgreens (48 percent).
* First-time users of a mobile site or app tend to be less satisfied with their mobile experiences as they learn new layouts, navigation, and functionality. First-time visitors score 77 compared to 80 for repeat visitors.
* Customers already familiar with a brand are more satisfied than people who were driven to the company’s mobile site or app via search engines or shopping comparison sites.
* The most popular tasks performed on mobile retail sites and apps were: looking up product details (28 percent), looking up price information (19 percent), and checking stock at a store (17 percent).
* 76 percent of those surveyed used mobile phones, while 24 percent used tablets.
The report is based on 4,500 customer surveys collected in August 2012.
More at www.ForeSeeResults.com.