New research reveals that consumers lose interest when they can’t find what they need on a company’s website quickly and easily, therefore potentially losing the company customers.
The study, conducted by Loudhouse, discovered that 57 percent of consumers will give up looking for information on a company’s website before looking at only five pages; “The 5th Page Rule”.
Furthermore, 67 percent of respondents will actually leave the website altogether rather than contact the company:
- 47 percent turn to an alternative supplier’s website
- 12 percent seek the information on a social networking site
- 8 percent give up completely on what they set out to do
- The remaining 33 percent will try to contact the company by other means such as the contact centre
In addition, nearly half of respondents (45 percent) reported that they usually can’t find the information they need or accomplish what they set out to do on an organisation’s website. These statistics illustrate a significant opportunity for organisations to understand the real intent of a customer’s visit to a website, and guide them to their intended purpose and high-value interactions.
Asked about which elements of a company’s website are found to be critical in providing a good customer experience, 80 percent of the study’s respondents pointed to easy search functions that provide relevant information; offers that match the products or services being searched for; and the ability to search using their own words.
The good news is that more than 70 percent of consumers will demonstrate increased loyalty to companies they feel treat them well online, and are more inclined to repeat purchases with a company that provides a good customer experience.
These patterns, including “The 5th Page Rule”, held consistent across the countries surveyed, with a few interesting distinctions:
- Respondents in Germany and the Netherlands are the most likely to go to a competitor’s website when they can’t find what they’re looking for
- Respondents in Spain are consistently the most likely to reach out to a contact centre, and the least likely to abandon a website
- British respondents are the most likely to go to a social networking site
- Respondents in the Netherlands demonstrate the most loyalty to telecom and financial services companies following a good experience; British respondents are the most loyal to the travel industry
- Respondents in Spain are the most likely to repeat purchases following a good customer experience
Commenting on the study, Marcel Smit, VP Natural Language Solutions at RightNow, said: “When consumers navigate company websites, they have a specific purpose in mind. But most website experiences miss the mark with unclear click paths and irrelevant information. Customers are forced to wade through a lot of clutter to find what they need, all of it competing for their attention. This study demonstrates that when organisations are able to guide customers directly to what they need, they not only avoid losing business, they win customer loyalty.”