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Research Article Open Access

The eCommerce Customer Journey: A Model to Assess and Compare the User Experience of the eCommerce Websites


Despite the considerable growth of the B2c eCommerce in the main European markets and in US (Forrester, 2008), the main figures show that the concentration of the market is very high and its value represents a limited part of the overall retail sales only. As a consequence the path to realize the full potential of the B2c eCommerce is still long and several hurdles have to be overcome. In this paper we focus our attention on the merchants, with the strong conviction that the offering is much differentiated in terms of customer experience (i.e. the path the customers follow from the landing on the website to the payment of the product/service). This is very important in determining the success of an eCommerce website, but it is very hard to be distinguished, analyzed and evaluated and there is a lack of contributions trying to estimate it in a quantitative and/or objective way. In order to fill this gap, this paper provides a model that aims at evaluating the customer experience of an eCommerce website. The model is based on a Customer Journey Map made of the five main phases the consumer goes through while purchasing on a B2c eCommerce website: landing, product identification, product presentation, cart, order completion and payment. The phases have been analyzed in detail taking into account at least 15 drivers/features each. One of the key output of the analysis accomplished with the model is a curve representative of the customer experience of a specific website made of five points (one point per phase), with values between 0 (low) and 1 (high level), that allows the reader to make comparisons between different eCommerce websites and identify their strengths and weaknesses. The reader will find a framework to evaluate the customer experience on a B2c eCommerce website in a quantitative way, in order to make comparisons with other merchants and identify the main areas to be improved to fill the gap with the competitors.

Riccardo Mangiaracina, Gianluca Brugnoli, Alessandro Perego

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