Companies are losing out on billions of dollars and pounds in revenue due to a poor online experience, according to research published today by Econsultancy and Tealeaf. A global survey of more than 500 businesses for the Reducing Customer Struggle report found that companies able to quantify site abandonment estimate they are losing the equivalent of 24% of their annual online revenue due to a bad website experience.
“This focus on understanding customer acquisition and giving less emphasis to the rest of the sales and marketing cycle mirrors the marketing bias towards acquiring customers which has been a feature of the business landscape over the last few years,” the report argues.
I believe that user interfaces and experiences, not data will redefine online commerce in the next wave. I would love to see an interface that allows me to see what strangers and my friends are browsing in real-time. I’d really love to invite my best friend in Madison to go on a shopping date while I’m in DC and browse a site simultaneously while I glance at her and what she’s browsing.
If you try to imagine these experiences in the web’s current architecture, it seems clunky, unrealistic even, but I assure you, the interfaces that use the data of web 2.0 will evolve and become increasingly important in web 3.0. And that’s what will define social on the Internet.
Common predictions are that “the first phase of e-commerce was the utilitarian hunt for staples, the next phase of e-commerce will be about recreational shopping where the merger of social and interest graphs will drive buying decisions,” but here’s my prediction: after the data, it’s going to be the experience. Data is useless without a meaningful experience to plug into. How the interface and experience of social is formed will drive the next evolution of online commerce.