Which? survey names Britain’s best and worst online shops

Homebase.co.uk has been rated the worst online retailer in the UK for 2018, according to the latest Which? annual online shop survey.

The independent consumer body asked more than 10,000 of its members in June and July about their shopping experiences online. They were asked to rate websites based on their experiences in the past six months and to consider factors including price, product range, deliveries, product quality and the returns process.

Homebase.co.uk achieved the lowest customer score of 55%. Shoppers told Which? they found the site difficult to navigate and not always up to date with stock information. Shoppers also criticised the retailer’s ‘poor product range, bog standard product quality and poor value for money’.

Joining Homebase.co.uk at bottom of the list were SportsDirect.com (61%) DorthyPerkins.com (61%), DIY.com (B&Q) (62%), WHSmith.co.uk (63%) and JDSports.co.uk (63%).

Which? said: ‘Specialist sellers trumped the better-known brands when it comes to customer satisfaction and likelihood to recommend. The top of the overall table is populated with smaller retailers that treat their customers well and offer a more personalised service.’

Coming out top overall was beauty specialist LizEarle.com, with a customer score of 94%. The skincare retailer was praised for its natural ‘high-quality products’, ‘excellent service’ and ‘good money off offers’. Many shoppers also mentioned that they were likely to get free gifts in their orders.

Next were RicherSounds.com, Rohan.co.uk, SeasaltCornwall.co.uk and WexPhotoVideo.com, which all came in with a high overall customer score of 93%.They were followed by JohnLewis.com (90%), Dyson.co.uk (89%) and Lakeland (89%).

When Which? asked people why they shop online, two-thirds (68%) of respondents said they do so because they can do so at a time that is convenient for them. Around three in five (63%) people said it was easier to find exactly what they wanted online and three in five (57%) said they had more choice of products.

More than half (56%) said it was easier to compare prices across different stores when shopping online and the same amount (56%) said it was more convenient to have their items delivered than to pick them up in person.

Harry Rose, Editor of Which? Magazine, said: “The online shops with the happiest customers tend to be the ones that offer a personal service, quality items and deliver quickly and conveniently. Where the big players are lacking – either with poor service or confusing websites – smaller more specialised online retailers have seized the opportunity to make their mark and give shoppers exactly what they want.”

Top online retailers

1 LizEarle.com 94%
2 RicherSounds.com 93%
= Rohan.co.uk 93%
= SeasaltCornwall.co.uk 93%
= WexPhotoVideo.com 93%
6 JohnLewis.com 90%
7 Dyson.co.uk 89%
= Lakeland.co.uk 89%
= Wordery.com 89%
10 AllBeauty.com 88%
= CTShirts.com (Charles Tyrwhitt) 88%
= Electrical.coop.co.uk 88%
=TheBookPeople.co.uk 88%
= Toolstation.com 88%
= Wiggle.co.uk 88%

Bottom online retailers

110 CreateAndCraft.com 67%
= LaRedoute.co.uk 67%
= Made.com 67%
113 JDSports.co.uk 63%
= WHSmith.co.uk 63%
115 DIY.com (B&Q) 62%
116 DorothyPerkins.com 61%
= SportsDirect.com 61%
118 Homebase.co.uk (Bunnings) 55%

The full list of results can be found at which.co.uk/onlineshops

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