FINANCE

Amazon sets standard in customer satisfaction survey

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Ann Arbor, Mich. — Amazon remains at the head of the class in terms of customer service, according to the annual Holiday E-Retail Satisfaction Index released Thursday by customer experience analytics firm ForeSee.

The eighth annual report — based on more than 24,000 customer surveys collected between Thanksgiving and Christmas — expands from measuring satisfaction with 40 top retailers to 100 this year. Aggregate customer satisfaction stagnates, scoring 78 on a 100-point scale. Though satisfaction with top retailers remains the same, a few big-name retailers suffered declines.

Apple’s online retail store slid 4% to 80, slipping from a tie for second place and out of the top five entirely, registering its lowest score in four years. The biggest year-over-year decline was JCPenney.com, with a 6% decline to 78.

"This year, we’re seeing that even some of the largest companies in the country are at risk if they lose sight of customer satisfaction," said Larry Freed, ForeSee president and CEO. "Satisfaction with the customer experience, when measured correctly, is the most important predictor of future success, and while Amazon clearly gets it, Apple stumbles from their usual focus on the customer experience.”

Meanwhile, Amazon.com continues to set the standard for customer satisfaction, matching the record high of 88 it set last year in the holiday edition of the Index. Amazon has had the highest scores in the Index for eight years in a row, consistently setting a pace that other retailers don’t seem to be able to touch. Their high score is partially because of the appeal and variety of merchandise they offer, a priority area for some other retailers.

"At this point, Amazon has been dominant for so long and has such a history of focusing on the customer, its hard to imagine anyone else coming close," added Freed. "Companies should emulate Amazon’s focus on the customer, which is clearly linked to superior revenues over the years."

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NicoleScott says:
Mar-14-2013 10:13 am

There are lots of group
There are lots of group buying websites, and Amazon is considered as one of the trusted retailer when it comes to best deals of products and services. - Kale Flagg

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FINANCE

Report: Port strike would threaten spring retail sales

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — A Wednesday report by MarketWatch said that a potential strike by nearly 15,000 dock workers at 14 ports from Boston to Houston beginning on Sunday may derail retailers’ spring selling as well.

National Retail Federation supply chain and custom policy issues head Jonathan Gold told MarketWatch that, even though a federal mediator has called for a meeting of the International Longshoremen’s Association and the U.S. Maritime Alliance ahead of the Dec. 29 contract expiration, it’s not clear when and where the two parties would do that in the next few days.

According to Gold, the two parties are in disagreement over container royalties, or the supplemental payments made to the workers based on the weight of containers that come through the ports.

The 14 ports along the East Coast and Gulf Coast handle about 6.5 million import containers annually, or 40% of imports to the U.S. The Port of New York and New Jersey is the largest port on the East Coast and the second largest in the country after the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach combined, where an eight-day strike ended earlier this month.

An East Coast strike “would have a significant impact on everybody through the supply chain,” Gold said.

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OPERATIONS

Murphy Oil announces deal with Wal-Mart for 200 fuel stations

BY Katherine Boccaccio

El Dorado, Ark. — Murphy Oil USA announced Wednesday it has entered into an agreement with Wal-Mart Stores Inc. for 200 new fuel stations in the midwestern and southeastern U.S.

According to the agreement, Murphy Oil will build more than 200 new fuel stations at existing Wal-Mart Super Centers over the next three years.

Steven Cosse, president and CEO, Murphy Oil Corp., said the agreement with Wal-Mart is a significant step forward for the pair’s long-term relationship.

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NicoleScott says:
Mar-14-2013 10:20 am

Looks like a good agreement.
Looks like a good agreement. A great partnership which promises a better development for both companies. - Kale Flagg

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