Study: Bigger doesn’t always mean better customer experience


Forrester Research has identified the retailers with the most and least satisfactory experience, and a very prominent name scored poorly.

Based on a survey of 122,500 U.S. adult consumers across a range of industries, Forrester’s “Customer Experience Index Online Survey – U.S. Consumers” indicates that QVC was the highest-scoring digital-only retail brand and Barnes & Noble was the highest-scoring traditional retail brand. Conversely, Gilt was the lowest-scoring digital-only retail brand and Walmart was the lowest-scoring traditional retail brand.

The study also reveals that based on overall scores and emotion, online retailers deliver a superior customer experience to that of traditional retailers. As an industry, they had a higher high score, a higher low score, and a higher average score than their bricks-and-clicks competitors.

In addition, digital retailers delivered 17 positive emotional experiences for every negative one, compared with just 13 positive emotional experiences for every negative one among traditional retailers. Zappos offered by far the most emotionally positive customer experience in the entire Index, with a ratio of 64 positive experiences for every one negative emotional experience.

Of all brands studied in the Index, QVC and Zappos were the highest-rated retailers, tied for fifth. Other retailers receiving top overall rankings include HSN (#7), Newegg (#12), Etsy (#12), and Barnes & Noble (#12). Barnes & Noble is the only traditional retailer to be ranked that highly overall. Credit card provider USAA was ranked #1 of all brands studied.


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