Online shoppers happier than ever: study

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Online shoppers are now more satisfied with their retail experiences over the internet than they have ever been, new research suggests.

The latest eCustomerServiceIndex report from IMRG and eDigitalResearch showed a user satisfaction level of 83.4% in the six months to January 2013. That’s the highest score on this measurement since the study began in 2008. The lowest score recorded was of 76.7% in July 2009.

“We’ve witnessed a big change in customer behaviour,” said Derek Eccleston, commercial director at eDigitalResearch. “With the explosion of smartphones and mcommerce around four years ago, followed by the introduction of tablet devices a couple of years later, consumers are now online more than ever. As retailers and brands continue to invest both time and effort into a number of online platforms it’s no surprise that overall satisfaction with online experiences is on the rise.”

Despite the rise in user experience ratings, respondents said they still wanted to see improvements. Some 23% said they wanted a better delivery experience, and 17% wanted a quicker response to queries. Some 40% was looking for improvements to customer service contacts, whether that’s through live chat or a freephone telephone number.

“The reasons behind this rise in satisfaction are twofold,” said Andy Mulcahy, head of communications at IMRG. “Retailers have invested a lot of money in enhancing the online experience by really focusing on their customers, while supporting technology elements such as rich media and social tools have greatly enhanced the idea of a site providing virtual assistance.

“Having said that customers are getting ever more demanding and every year brings new devices and channels that need to be catered for within the marketing strategy. With the modern customer there is never any time for complacency.”

More information about the eCustomerService Keeping Your Customers satisfied report is available here.

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