Shipping News: Shipping and Transportation Companies Require Opt-In Standards

The transportation, distribution, and logistics industry continues to improve its Web services for customers; however, many sites routinely reuse customer information without the consumer’s explicit consent. The Customer Respect Group released its “Fourth Quarter 2005 Customer Respect Study of the Transportation, Distribution and Logistics Industry” report, which details customer opinion of the industry.

The percentage of companies with the capabilities to reuse customer information was 33 percent one year ago and 42 percent six months ago. Currently, 67 percent of businesses in the industry are able to reuse customer information.

Much of the information reuse is done without a consumer’s explicit consent, though the trend is reversing as companies upgrade their systems.

“When companies install new systems that make the reuse of data easier, they are then obligated to involve the customer and get their explicit consent,” said Terry Golesworthy, president of The Customer Respect Group. “By ignoring the customer’s concerns, companies risk losing customer loyalty and repeat business.”

The survey finds the industry’s leading companies have migrated to opt-in strategies. Nearly a quarter of companies, however, not only reuse customer data without consent but also share information externally or are ambiguous about how the data are used. That’s up from 16 percent in an earlier study.

Overall, the survey garnered a customer respect index (CRI) score of 7.0, improved from 6.6 in the previous report, Q2 2005. The improved score moves the sector from fifth position to second, tied with the retail industry and behind the airline and travel industries.

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. The report analyzed mail; package and freight delivery; trucking and truck leasing; and mail facilitation Web sites to obtain a good sample of the sector.

Tranport, Distribution, and Logistics Customer Rating Index Ratings, Q4 2005
Rank Company URL CRI
1 Overnite Transportation Company 8.7
2 (tie) Canada Post 8.0
2 (tie) Purolator 8.0
2 (tie) United Parcel Service 8.0
2 (tie) United States Postal Service 8.0
3 ABF Freight System, Inc. 7.8
4 Yellow Corporation 7.6
5 (tie) PitneyBowes 7.4
5 (tie) 7.4
6 DHL 7.2
7 AMERCO (U-Haul) 6.9
8 TNT 6.8
9 (tie) FedEx Corporation 6.7
9 (tie) Penske Truck Leasing 6.7
10 BAX Global 6.6
11 Budget Truck Rental 6.5
12 Roadway Express 6.4
13 Mail Boxes Etc. 5.8
14 Neopost 5.4
15 USF Corporation 5.1
16 Ryder System 5.0
Industry average 7.0
Source: The Customer Respect Group, December 2005

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