Reading about Future Now’s 2007 Retail Customer Experience Study reminded me of the recent Forrester report reporting a drop in the number of online travel buyers which has brought out the cheering section for the travel agent community claiming some sort of victory for the old ways of purchasing travel offline.
Digging a bit deeper, the above study – which admittedly deals with online retail eCommerce for goods – shows some interesting statistics:
- only 26% of online consumers were simply satisfied
- Customers aren’t delighted.
- failure of online stores to present a customer-focused shopping environment
The same might be said about online travel sites and the experience they offer which needs to improve as today’s online shopper in any category is becoming increasingly demanding about what to expect in terms of ease of use and relevant information that makes the buying decision easier. It’s no longer enough for any intermediary to just claim the lowest price for a commodity product, it’s about more than that and if satisfaction is not provided the online channel could indeed lose steam, at least temporarily.