Jeep.com Among Highest-Rated Manufacturer Web Sites

Date 2006/1/31 23:02:00 | Topic: Miscellaneous

(from an official press release)

The Harris Interactive(R) Automotive Website Assessment Study evaluates the effectiveness and visitor satisfaction of 37 major U.S. automotive OEM brand websites. Results from the most recent study, conducted among more than 16,000 U.S. online consumers, shows that overall website satisfaction is highest for Cadillac, Hummer and Jeep (all achieving an overall satisfaction rating of 8.6 out of 10). Closely following them are websites for Chevrolet, GMC, Honda, and Mercedes-Benz (all with satisfaction rates of 8.5 out of 10).

By combining the expertise of its automotive and technology research practices, Harris Interactive is able to identify industry best practices, pinpoint elements of visitor satisfaction, and provide key input to automotive marketers and website managers for improved automotive brand website performance. The bi-annual study provides detailed diagnostics and analysis including home page assessment and website evaluation that focuses on information and content, appearance and design, ease of use and navigation.
Other key findings from the study include:

* Key features identified as having the most impact on overall satisfaction with a website visit are:
- Reliability (i.e., no broken links or errors)
- Appealing design
- Ability to find things quickly, and
- Easy to navigate.

* Nearly six in ten (58%) online consumers have used the auto manufacturer's website to learn about vehicles, second only to in-person dealership visits (77%).

* Among those using the Internet as a source for new vehicle information, two-thirds (68%) say the Internet was at least somewhat influential to their purchase to buy their most current vehicle.

"The results of this research support general website development 'theory': Be sure the website is functional, provide visitors with the right information, make it easy to get to, and present it in an eye-pleasing fashion," comments Karen Chiarelli, vice president of the Technology Research Practice at Harris Interactive. "Common complaints about websites are links that do not work, missing or inappropriate information, difficult or clumsy navigation, and eye-straining color combinations and contrasts."

"With many consumers citing the Internet as a leading source for vehicle information, it is critical that companies assess visitors' needs, expectations and satisfaction levels and adapt or develop their websites accordingly," states Bryan Krulikowski, senior director of automotive research at Harris Interactive. "The Automotive Website Assessment Study is designed to provide automotive marketers with a fresh look at website satisfaction in terms of depth, flexibility, actionable data, and cost."



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