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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : April 02, 2009

Study: Online travel sites not living up to expectations and are among several large online travel websites that are failing to meet customer expectations, according to new research by Global Reviews. But even some of the top-rated sites in the survey barely managed to scrape through.

by Helen Leggatt

Global Reviews assessed online package holiday websites and online travel agents against more than 600 criteria to find out which offered the best online customer experience. Those involved were scored on various aspects of their online presence including the information available to prospective customers, customer support and site usability.

Global Reviews' scale of satisfaction was based on customer satisfaction being achieved at 55%, and Neilsen scored 57% overall for online experience in the package holiday category. However, it's a long way off 69%, the point at which Global Reviews' considers consumer expectations to have been exceeded.

Crystal Ski came second with a score of 48%, followed by Club Med 46%, Mark Warner 44%, Sunsail 40% and Esprit Ski 28%.

Expedia was found to offer the best all round experience in the online travel agent travel agent category. Expedia recorded a satisfaction rate of 59%, scored 54%, while EasyJet was the worst performing site with a score of 46%.

"The majority of people now carry out their holiday research online. If customers are unable to find the information they are looking for, or struggle with the booking process, competitors are only a click away," said Global Reviews director, Bertie Stevenson.

"Sites should give consumers utilities such as wish lists to manage that journey better so they don't need to go back and forth."

Tags: customer satisfaction, EasyJet, Global Reviews, holiday,, Neilsen, online experience, online research, package holiday, travel, travel agent

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