Satisfaction plateaus  for government Web sites

Latest ACSI survey reports most users are relatively satisfied with sites

Users of government Web sites report no greater satisfaction with these sites than they did four months ago, according to the most recent American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI), a quarterly survey of Web site users.

Government sites scored 73.6 on a 100-point scale in terms of user satisfaction. The number is the same as last quarter's score, which itself comes after three straight quarters of declining scores, according to the surveyors.

The University of Michigan performs the ACSI E-government survey, which uses the online customer satisfaction surveyor ForeSee Results. Agency participants opt in to the survey, and visitors to their sites get the option of filling out a survey that rates their satisfaction with the site being visited. This survey tallies the results of 109 sites.

“Our research shows that online satisfaction plays a critical role in the federal government’s overall mission because it predicts the future behaviors from citizens that lead to more government efficiency,” said Larry Freed, president and CEO of ForeSee, in a statement.“The Web is the most resource-efficient channel available to government, so it is imperative for federal agencies to optimize performance to encourage further adoption of the Web channel.”

Of the four government subgroups in the survey, e-commerce/transaction sites scored the highest overall, with about 78 points. Career/recruitment sites scored 76, portals/department main sites scored 74, and news/information sites scored 73.

The Social Security Administration had the three top-rated sites, with SSA iClaim scoring 91, the SSA Retirement Estimator scoring 89 and Help with Medicare Prescription Drug Plan Costs scoring 87.

About the Author

Joab Jackson is the senior technology editor for Government Computer News.

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