Searching for Satisfaction

E-tailers that help online shoppers save time and money are likely to
improve customer satisfaction, according to research from ForeSee Results that demonstrates the
influence of shopping search engines on consumer behavior.

“Consumers clearly grasp the advantages of shopping search, but merchants
reap great benefits as well. Shopping search engines provide them with a
large quantity of qualified shoppers who turn into highly satisfied online
buyers that are likely to return again and again,” said Larry Freed,
president and CEO of ForeSee Results.

The survey, conducted live on DealTime.com with over 1,100 consumers during
the 2002 holiday season, found that the majority of online shoppers use
shopping search engines to save time (54 percent) and money (52 percent),
and those that compare prices are 22 percent more satisfied with their
buying experience than those who don’t.

Furthermore, the study shows that those using shopping engines to compare
prices quickly are 24 percent more likely to shop online in the next two
months, 25 percent are more likely to shop online next holiday season, and
26 percent more likely to recommend online shopping to others.

Freed attributed the increase in e-commerce loyalty to consumers’ need to
reward organizations that provide significant value to their shopping
experience and a high level of satisfaction with their future purchasing
activity. Also, satisfied shoppers are more likely to leverage the immense
referral power of the Web.

ForeSee’s research revealed that almost three-quarters (73 percent) of
e-consumers used a shopping search engine to compare prices quickly,
followed by compare products (54 percent) and find stores that sell those
products (45 percent).

Other reasons that were cited for using a shopping search engine were: lower
risk of making a bad purchase (28 percent); to find the most popular
products (27 percent); narrow product choices (25 percent); compare the
reputations of online stores (25 percent); research offline purchases (20
percent); and make trade-off between price and store reputation (17
percent).

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