FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW STUDY IDENTIFIES RECURRING CONSUMER DISEASE:
PALO ALTO, Calif., 20 July, 2000...Findings from new research on US and UK online shopping will be released tomorrow at a Breakfast Briefing in Palo Alto. "Click-Here Commerce 2000," an international study of the critical success factors of online stores, has identified the source of what Shelley Taylor & Associates have named the disturbing consumer disease: Shopping Cart Abandonment Syndrome. The research found that online vendors, some of the hottest names in e-tailing, are responsible for the latest outbreak in customer frustration, anxiety and shopping cart abandonment, symptoms caused by poor web site design. Further, the research has found that the disease is highly contagious and is spreading rapidly to business-to-business online purchasers.
"Click-Here Commerce 2000" evaluates 100 online stores — 70 US and 30 UK — representing a cross-industry sample, including: apparel, books/CDs/entertainment, flowers & gifts, food & wine, health & beauty, home & garden, office supplies, pets, software, sporting goods and toys. Sites were evaluated using more than 350 proprietary evaluation criteria. Some of the online stores that have been evaluated include: Amazon.com, CDNow, Dell Gigabuys, Nordstrom, ToysR Us, Victoria's Secret in the US and Boots, Debenhams, Thomas Cook, Waitrose and WH Smith in the UK.
"It is no wonder that online profits have been prophesied but rarely realized. In the mad rush to launch online stores, so that founders (and investors—they're guilty too!) can gain access to pots of gold, basic economics and retailing wisdom have been forgotten," said Shelley Taylor. "Boo.com's flamboyant demise, and countless others that are following suit, provide a cautionary tale to all who care to see it. All that glitters is not gold, or does not lead to gold. Much more attention should be given to substance than sizzle by online vendors, providing customers with the experiences that will translate into completed transactions and repeat business. " Taylor argues that "these cautions should be extended to B2B exchanges and market places, the new stock market darlings — take heed!."
"This study exposes major flaws in current e-commerce practices," said Lex Sisney, Commission Junction CEO and Founder and sponsor of the research. "It is a perfect lightning rod for change in e-commerce as we know it."
THE BEST AND THE WORST
The Top 5 sites were: ToysR US, Beyond.com, Planet Rx, Jungle (the only UK site in the top 5!) and CDNow. The Bottom 5 included (worst is listed first): JJB Sports (UK), Sony, Waitrose (UK), Elonex (UK) and Simply Computers (UK). Some of the other US sites with the fewest customer interface success factors (poorest experiences) include: Reflect.com, Victoria's Secret, Sharper Image and Red Envelope.