For more than a decade siteIQ has sponsored the siteIQ eBusiness Index, an ongoing study that benchmarks the performance of leading websites across the IT industry. Each year our analysts audit and evaluate 20 or more prominent sites on the IT web to assess how well they market and sell their products and provide pre- and post-purchase support for their varied audiences. The overall results of these evaluations are posted to our website, siteIQ.net, and detailed Website Content, Usability and Performance results are available to our siteIQ Library subscribers.
As announced earlier this year, however, the siteIQ eBusiness Index will be converted to the siteIQ Usability Index beginning with our 2020 evaluations. Consequently, our 2019 audits mark the end of an era — and will be the last time Website Content and Website Performance are assessed.
Thus, for the final time, this summary announces Overall rankings and ratings based on Website Performance, Total Content, and Website Usability scores awarded during our 2019 siteIQ eBusiness Index evaluations.
Even though we shook up the eBusiness Index roster by eliminating ten poorly performing websites, adding nine new ones, reducing eight industry segments to five, and reassigning two sites from one segment to another before our 2019 evaluations there aren’t many surprises in the overall results. This turn of events is disappointing given that we made such sweeping changes with the hope that some new competitors and industry parameters would affect scoring and rankings — and potentially reveal some new eBusiness Index leaders.
Alas, nothing could be further from the truth. Instead, our 2019 evaluation results reveal that the prevailing sites barely change no matter which competitors they’re pitted against or how we try to shake up the Index roster.
In fact, except for HPE.com, Adobe.com, and PaloAltoNetworks.com, which make notable upward jumps thanks to the addition of content or improved usability scores, ranking changes aren’t very dramatic for veteran Index websites. Sure, some get shoved a few notches up or down due to the elimination of poorly performing sites, the addition of new sites and the movement of HPE.com, Adobe.com, and PaloAltoNetworks.com, but for the most part veteran sites hold their ground.
Nowhere is this truer than at the top of the rankings where leading sites flip-flop their positions or simply trade places. As a result, the Overall Website Performance, Total Website Content, and Overall Website Usability winners will come as no surprise.
As for sites that are new to the eBusiness Index, none perform as well as we had hoped. Only one — VMWare.com — makes its way into the top 10 while the rest fall to the bottom of the rankings where they languish alongside Apple.com. This is discouraging given that some — including Samsung.com, LG.com, AWS.com, and Google Cloud — are the face for some of the heaviest hitting companies in the world.
So, while we didn’t know what impact the new roster and industry designations would have on eBusiness Index soring and rankings when we decided that 2019 would mark the conclusion of the siteIQ eBusiness Index, it seems the timing couldn’t have been more appropriate. After all, what sense does it make to evaluate these aspects of website performance if the results barely change?
Now we’re looking forward to establishing the siteIQ Usability Index, which will include more than 350 usability questions across 18 different categories and focus on user experience as well as usability based on a whole slew of dimensions that illustrate how effectively websites achieve core business and design objectives. This approach is sure to provide a whole new set of data that will help us better identify which sites are the most practical, versatile and useful for visitors — and which ones aren’t.
This new Index is also sure to provide a whole new set of results because we’ve decided to expand the scope of our research beyond tech. This means that, in addition to some of the stalwart tech sites that we’ve always tracked, we’ll also be evaluating sites in a whole bunch of new industry segments including finance, food & beverage, B2C merchandising, and transportation.
That’s sure to cause some upheaval across otherwise static rankings. In the meantime, what follows are the final eBusiness Index results.
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About the siteIQ eBusiness Index
siteIQ evaluated the twenty-five Websites listed on the 2019 siteIQ eBusiness Index. These Websites are categorized into five industry-specific segments including:
- Software (Adobe.com, Citrix.com, IBM.com, Microsoft Business, Oracle.com, SAP.com, Symantec.com)
- Cloud (AWS.com, Cloud.Google.com, Salesforce.com, VMWare.com)
- Systems (CDW.com, e.Huawei.com, HPE.com, Intel.com)
- Networking (Cisco.com, Juniper.net, PaloAltoNetworks.com, Riverbed.com)
- Consumer (Apple.com, Dell.com, HP.com, Lenovo.com, LG.com, Samsung.com)
These in-depth evaluations were conducted using the 2019 edition of the siteIQ eBusiness Index Best Practices Benchmark, which includes 18 distinct categories. Within each category, sites are scored based on three unique criteria:
- Website Content: The content, resources, assets, and collateral provided on any given Website. The siteIQ Best Practices Benchmark currently identifies & tracks over 1,000 types of Website content and features that represent typical competitive requirements. Within each category siteIQ analysts track the number — as well as quality — of features provided.
- Website Usability: The overall practicality, versatility, usefulness, and convenience of any given Website. The siteIQ Best Practices Benchmark currently includes 145 metrics that measure usability from the visitor’s perspective. Within each category siteIQ analysts score usability questions based on a strict set of standards to award between 1—100 points per question.
- Overall Performance: The aggregate suitability of any given Website that factors Website Content and Website Usability scores.
The 2019 evaluations were performed during the first quarter of 2019.
Category: Index Rankings
Class: Website Reviews and Rankings
Websites Profiled: siteIQ eBusiness Index Websites