For the eighth straight year, Amazon ranked first in ForeSee's annual Holiday E-Retail Satisfaction Index, holding steady from last year. Other big companies such as Penney, Dell and even Apple, however, saw declines their scores.
The study, based on more than 24,000 customer surveys collected during the holiday shopping season between Thanksgiving and Christmas, expanded from measuring satisfaction with 40 top retailers to 100 this year.
Amazon's scored an 88 out of 100, the same as last year.
In a statement, Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee, which measures customer satisfaction for companies, attributed Amazon's high satisfaction rates to the wide variety of merchandise it offers and a site that is easy to use.
"At this point, Amazon has been dominant for so long and has such a history of focusing on the customer, its hard to imagine anyone else coming close," added Mr. Freed.
L.L. Bean came in second with an 85, up from 81 a year earlier. Others scoring high were QVC.com, 84; Esteelauder.com, 83; and Cabelas.com, Avon.com and HSN.com, all at 81. The index mean average was 78.
Among the big name decliners was Apple's online retail store, which slid four points to 80, its lowest score in four years. Mr. Freed said that with many new launches in recent months, navigating the site had become more problematic.
Dell.com also fell four points to 77. But the biggest year-over-year decline went to JCPenney.com, down to 78 from 84 last year. Mr. Freed said of Penney, "They've struggled a lot in their stores as they've tried to reinvent themselves a bit and that's carried over a little bit to the website."
Among other bigger chains, Walmart.com scored a 78, down from 79 in 2011. Target.com scored 79, up from 76 last year, when it had some struggles after taking over control of the site from Amazon. Nordstrom.com, Macys.com and Kohls.com were all also close to the mean of 78.
Scoring slightly lower than average were REI.com, ToyRUs.com, Nike.com, Sears.com and Lowes.com. At the bottom of the list were Gilt.com, CrateAndBarrell.com and Fingerhut.com.
ForeSee's findings indicate that satisfied website visitors are 71 percent more likely to purchase from the retailer online and 58 percent more likely to purchase offline. They are also 67 percent more likely to purchase from the retailer next time, 65 percent more committed to the brand overall, and 69 percent more likely to recommend the retailer. Analysis of top e-retailers in the U.S. has also shown that, on average, a one-point change in website satisfaction leads to a 14 percent change in the log of revenues generated on the web.
Of the following, what's the biggest factor driving Amazon's high customer satisfaction rates?