Facebook losing on customer satisfaction

It’s got rivals beat on market penetration, but Facebook is getting low marks for satisfaction in a new customer-satisfaction survey, and that has one analyst firm suggesting that Mark Zuckerberg and company better watch their backs.

Facebook scored 61 out of 100 on a satisfaction scale released today as part of the American Customer Satisfaction Index E-Business Report, produced in partnership with analytics firm ForeSee. Facebook suffered the largest decline of any of the 230 companies rated in the survey and ranks among the worst five companies on the list.

Facebook is behind smaller competitor Google+, which scored 78 in its first appearance on the ACSI report and scored better than Facebook when it comes to privacy, ads, and mobile. The social commerce giant also lags behind Pinterest (69), LinkedIn (63), and Twitter (64).

But it’s not alone. Other e-business companies have failed to keep up with consumer demands, and the entire sector has fallen to a score of 74.2 versus the national ACSI score of 75.9.

Indeed, bigger doesn’t seem to be noticeably better in this survey. Among portals and search engines, Google scores 82, just one point above smaller competitor Bing, at 81.

The study suggests that customer satisfaction impacts financial performance. Larry Freed, president and chief executive officer of ForeSee, had this to say in the release: “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.”

Facebook, which swaggered into its initial public offering and has since been humbled on Wall Street, might want to consider an old adage: The customer is always right.

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