World's Largest Internet Study finds Ease-Of-Use is the Secret to Success

Jun 13, 2012, 10:01 ET from

MELBOURNE, Australia, June 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- In the world's largest international study of online consumer behavior involving more than 36,000 users, Americans were found to be more trusting online than other countries, have the most attractive websites, but suffer from poorer quality information. The most successful websites were the easiest to use.

The Webreep online consumer survey analyzed consumer behavior on the internet between May 2011 and May 2012. Participants were distributed across 7 regions, including France, Germany, Spain, Australia, China, and Russia.

The study found that Americans are the most trusting, 20% more than Europeans, the Chinese (23%), and Russians (33%).

Dr. Brent Coker, an online consumer psychologist who co-authored the report says, "Americans feel more safe on the internet than the rest of the world. In the past we've known that the Chinese are concerned about eavesdropping, and the Russians with hackers. Now we're also seeing these types of concerns spread to Germany, France, Spain and Australia. However, these concerns just haven't seemed to have hit the US yet."

The study also found that Americans place greater value on websites that are easy to use, with those websites that were easiest having the greatest word-of-mouth and loyalty.

"This finding could explain why phenomenally successful websites like Pinterest and Instagram have taken center stage. The Americans seem to have the edge when it comes to producing simple websites that perform complex functions. Old school social media sites like Facebook and LinkedIn should probably focus on ease-of-use if they want to survive," said Dr. Coker.

The study also finds that American websites are perceived as providing lower quality information. Compared to the French, Americans believe the quality of information online is 78% worse, and 60% worse than the Australians and Russians.

"We're not interpreting this to mean that American websites are worse. It's just that Americans have a higher expectation for high quality information," said Dr. Coker.

Also in the report: The French have abnormally high correlation between website attractiveness and satisfaction. The Spanish have the greatest sense of style on the internet. The Germans have the lowest tolerance for poor information quality and slow download speeds. And the Australians and Russian are the least satisfied.

The report can be downloaded at Webreep is the world's leading customer feedback tool.


Dr Brent Coker

T) +61-3-83441933; +61-421764085


Eoin Hahessy media-officer

T) +61-432213616