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British retailers fail customers with online experience

07 December 2017 - 11:07 by Simon Crisp

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The latest report from KPMG suggests that retail brands in the UK are falling short of the standards set by their North American counterparts in terms of the quality of the experience that customers can expect when they carry out safe shopping online.

The analyst-assigned scoring system found that there was actually a dip in the performance of British firms over the past 12 months, while in the US a solid improvement was registered.

Not all brands are on a level pegging, as QVC managed to outpace all of its rivals in the UK and achieve a rating which is almost a tenth higher than typically experienced across the marketplace.

In particular, it was QVC’s ability to keep customers happy via social media, responding to queries and complaints faster than other firms, which allowed it to stand head and shoulders above the crowd.

Retailers were assessed according to a range of different criteria, including everything from the degree of personalisation they offer via safe shopping online to the extent to which they are able to empathise with customers and adjust their e-commerce offerings accordingly.

Personalisation in particular has been picked up as important in a number of consumer surveys, with expectations about the ability to adjust the online retail experience to fit individual shoppers rising in recent years.

Other retailers in the UK which managed to perform better than average in terms of their customer experience rating include John Lewis, Lush and Ocado. Amazon managed to just squeeze into the top 10, although it is worth noting that its rating actually fell in comparison with last year’s study.

Expectations are always changing, especially online, so retailers cannot afford to rest on their laurels and instead need to strive to constantly improve their offerings, or else face further falls.