Google+ gets a thumbs up in July survey

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Integrating Social Media : Google+ gets a thumbs up but Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Twitter disappoint in the latest ACSI E business report in association with Foresee. Originally posted in July 2012.

Google+ performs well in a first appearance in the ACSI survey. According to the report, Google+’s strong showing is a result of an absence of traditional advertising and what is seen as a superior mobile product. Google+’s strengths may be Facebook’s weaknesses, as users complain about ads and privacy concerns. However, the most frequent complaints about Facebook are changes to its user interface, most recently the introduction of the Timeline feature.

Facebook, already the lowest-scoring e-business company, suffers the largest decline in customer satisfaction according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) E-Business Report in partnership with customer experience analytics firm ForeSee. “The social media juggernaut plunges 8% to 61 on a 100-point scale, setting a new record-low score for the Social Media category and placing it among the five lowest-scoring companies of more than 230 measured by the ACSI.”

Foresee explains there are three major reasons for Facebook’s low score :
1 The introduction of the “timeline” feature: The new “timeline” user interface, which radically changed the look, feel, layout, and functionality of Facebook, has been met with widespread criticism since its introduction in September of 2011. When asked what they like least about Facebook, a significant portion of respondents specifically mention the “timeline” feature.

2 Intrusive, irrelevant, and repetitive ads: One-fifth of Facebook users (19%) say that ads actively interfere with their experience of the site. When asked what they like least about Facebook, advertising is a frequently-cited complaint.

3 Concerns about privacy: When asked to rate Facebook’s commitment to protecting their privacy, nearly half of survey respondents rated it poor (5 or lower on a 10-point poor-to-excellent scale).

“Facebook and Google+ are competing on two critical fronts: customer experience and market penetration. Google+ handily wins the former, and Facebook handily wins the latter, for now,” said Larry Freed, President and CEO of ForeSee. “It’s worth asking how much customer satisfaction matters for Facebook, given its unrivaled 800 million user base. But I expect Google to leverage its multiple properties and mobile capabilities to attract users at a rapid pace. If Facebook doesn’t feel the pressure to improve customer satisfaction now, that may soon change.”

In addition to Google+, three other social media websites featured, fast-growing Pinterest (69), professional networking site LinkedIn (63), and (64). Scores for LinkedIn and are well below the category average. Wikipedia ties Google+ at 78 to lead the category for a third straight year. Google’s other social media property, YouTube, slips a point to 73, but still scores above the category average.

About the ACSI
The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) is a national economic indicator of customer evaluations of the quality of products and services available to household consumers in the United States. The ACSI uses data from interviews with roughly 70,000 customers annually as inputs to an econometric model for measuring satisfaction with more than 230 companies in 47 industries and 10 economic sectors, as well as over 100 services, programs, and websites of federal government agencies.

ACSI results are released on a monthly basis, with all measures reported using a scale of 0 to 100. The Index was founded at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and is produced by ACSI LLC and supported in part by ForeSee, corporate sponsor for the 
e-commerce and e-business measurements.

About the Author

  • Dr John Ashcroft

    John Ashcroft is a visiting professor at Manchester University and Executive in residence at Manchester Business School, specializing in Economics Corporate Strategy and Social Media. Author of the Saturday Economist, The Apple Case Study and The Sunday Times and Croissants John is Chief Executive of pro.manchester, a Director of Marketing Manchester, a member of the GM Chamber of Commerce Council and the AGMA Business Leadership Council.


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