High-tech firms waver in their ability to deal with online customers, according to The Customer Respect Group‘s report on the high-tech and computer industry. Though some firms improved their behaviors, 37 percent of those surveyed slipped in score since the previous report, six months ago.
“Increasingly, the major companies are stopping sharing; for the first time, it’s becoming a business factor,” said Terry Golesworthy, president of The Customer Respect Group. “It’s a positive thing to say in market terms.”
Opt-in practices aid the cleanup of privacy practices and information sharing. Thirty-seven percent of companies allow users to opt in to ongoing email marketing. The report finds the rest use implied consent, which requires users to take action to be removed from mailing lists and shared customer information.
“Companies are making categorical statements up front, making clear statements about what’s going on there,” said Golesworthy. “There’s a general shift towards opt-in versus opt-out. A year ago, it was rare to find people doing opt-in; now it’s about 40 percent.”
Data were compiled by interviews of a representative sample of adult Internet users and by analysis and categorization of more than 2,000 corporate Web sites across a spectrum of industries. The Customer Respect Group identified the attributes that collectively measure the online customer experience.
|High Technology Products and Services Customer Rating Index Ratings, Q1 2006|
|1||Electronic Data Systems||www.eds.com||8.7|
|4 (tie)||Linksys (a division of Cisco Systems)||www.linksys.com||8.0|
|4 (tie)||Microsoft Corporation||www.microsoft.com||8.0|
|9 (tie)||Electronic Arts||www.ea.com||7.5|
|9 (tie)||Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson||www.ericsson.com||7.5|
|10 (tie)||Lexmark International||www.lexmark.com||7.4|
|11 (tie)||3Com Corporation||www.3com.com||7.3|
|11 (tie)||SunGard Data Systems||www.sungard.com||7.3|
|Source: The Customer Respect Group, January 2006|