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---- Why did you buy from X site and not Y?
pixel_juice - 6:33 pm on May 27, 2003 (gmt 0)Usability: if (parts of) the site doesn't function properly, for whatever reason, my credit card stays firmly in my pocket.
I've recently been doing a fair bit of online purchasing.
Here's some things I have found particularly important in purchasing decisions.
Clear information on delivery, pricing and terms and conditions. If I can't find shipping costs before I'm being asked to fill in the purchase form, I'm outta there.
Good information about the particular product. I'm amazed by the number of sites that have an out-of-the-box shopping catalog with next to no information about the items, and at best a grainy picture.
Customer comments or reviews are very reassuring.
If you don't mind a little wandering from the initial question, I think it's worth saying that I am an extremely loyal online purchaser. The first purchase from a website is generally the time I make up my mind whether to buy anything from them again. I recently bought some electrical goods online. I didn't get any email confirmations of any kind, I wasn't given any precise details of when it would arrive, and I was even told over the telephone that my goods had been shipped before I even ordered them! I was very happy with the product, but I will shop elsewhere in the future.
On the other hand, sites with good levels of service 'behind the scenes' can be assured that they have a returning customer. I bought a custom PC a few months ago. In the initial stages I emailed an idea of my spec to quite a number of different online stores, asking for an idea of price. 75% didn't even reply to my email. Three sites got back to me, two with information that I felt was slightly misleading in order to get me to spend more.
The final company sent me a hugely informative email, even suggesting that some of the components I was looking at were too expensive for what they were, and giving me an excellent spec. In this way, they now have a satisfied customer and an active advocate of their company.
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