Advertisements, Page Load Speeds Bring Diminished Customer Satisfaction

Some 22% of search visitors cite ads as what they like least about Bing, Google and Yahoo engines, while three out of five social media site visitors do not pay attention to ads, and one in five said ads interfere with their experience, according to a study released Tuesday.

Consumers participating in the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) annual E-Business scores report, produced in partnership with ForeSee, cite the quality of advertisements and page load speeds as two factors they like least about search and portal Web sites.

Google remains the most satisfying search engine, despite a 6% slide to a score of 77, but its primary rivals Bing and Yahoo tie for second at 76 with a decline of 6% and 3%, respectively. MSN and AOL came in at 74 and 71, respectively.

Overall satisfaction with e-business dropped 3.9% to 71.3 on ACSI's 100-point scale. The score is the lowest since 2002. The study attributes the decline largely to falling customer satisfaction with search engines and portals.

Despite the convenience of reaching for a mobile device on the go to access the Internet, only 9% of search engine users surveyed said they access a search engine via a mobile device, and 24% said they use mobile to connect with news and information, according to Larry Freed, CEO at ForeSee.

Ironically, social media continues to provide one of the least satisfying experiences in all of the ACSI. The category dips 1.4% to 68, putting social media on par with subscription TV service and rating better than only ISPs.

Wikipedia retains its top position with an unchanged score of 78. Pinterest climbs 4% to 72 -- four points behind the industry leader, but enough to give it second place. Google+ lost the shiny object syndrome and settles in at 71 from its debut at the top of the industry last year, tying with YouTube, which fell 3%. Twitter rose 2% to 65, Facebook rose 2% to 62, and LinkedIn fell -2% to 62.

Customer satisfaction with news and information Web sites did not improve or decline, but rather remained at a score of 73 for a third year in a row. FOXNews.com produced a customer satisfaction score of 82, with ABCNews.com and NBCNews.com following with 75. HuffingtonPost.com came in at the opposite end -- unchanged at a rating of 69 points.       

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