Like the Food & Beverage group in general, Food Production companies sell some of the most recognizable brands that span global markets and cultures — and feed millions of people worldwide every day. These companies spend billions of dollars annually on multi-media advertising and social marketing campaigns to reinforce corporate branding and gain mind share among consumers. But how well do their websites work?

To find out, the siteIQ team conducted Usability Index evaluations using the Food Production version of the siteIQ Best Practices Usability benchmark. This benchmark includes 161 questions across three major categories and eight distinct sub-categories.

These questions measure the overall practicality, versatility, and convenience of any given website. A second review recategorizes the 161 questions into 16 unique Usability Dimensions that illustrate how sufficiently each website allows users to achieve everyday tasks, objectives, and goals.

The results of these evaluations allow the team to rank and rate each site to determine the winner overall. This case study announces key findings for the Food Production industry segment based on Website Usability and Website Usability by Dimension scores. 

The websites evaluated in this segment include CHSInc.com, Ingredion.com, Sysco.com, and TysonFoods.com.

Industry Findings 

If there’s one obvious takeaway from our inaugural Food Production evaluations, it’s that TysonFoods.com and Sysco.com dominate this segment while Ingredion.com and CHSInc.com are subordinate competitors. A review of rankings and ratings shows that either TysonFoods.com or Sysco.com is the leader of the pack in seven out of eight benchmark sub-categories and fifteen out of sixteen Usability Dimensions — and where one leads the other typically follows.

There is also a less obvious takeaway from our evaluations. This is that Sysco.com actually beats TysonFoods.com in the three most important sub-categories — and six of the most critical Usability Dimensions. And, when Sysco.com does trail TysonFoods.com, it typically does so by a very slim margin.

The net result is that Sysco.com trails TysonFoods.com by 0.5% based on Overall Usability, which means it’s perfectly poised to steal the top spot. What’s more, Sysco.com could gain victory by default if TysonFoods.com falters only slightly. This, of course, isn’t out of the realm of possibility given that our evaluation results also show that Food Production sites are only adequately useful and effective for visitors.

This issue becomes especially evident when reviewing sub-category and Usability Dimension scores in areas that are most critical to common user activities and objectives. In particular, the Product Marketing sub-category average signals that at least one site struggles to present useful, informative, and easy to use marketing information and individual Search scores indicate that several sites are lacking advanced options.

Also, less-than-stellar scores in Ease of Locating Content & Features, Ease of Understanding Content & Features, Thoroughness of Content, and Usefulness of Resources are a clear indication that Food Production sites don’t connect with visitors as well as they should. Still, strong performances in Linking Conventions, Ease of Locating Links, Navigational Usability, Acceptability of Click Streams, and Logic of Features & Site zones mean most Food Production sites are relatively easy to maneuver. So, there is still hope for these sites to improve their usability in the future.

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About the siteIQ Usability Index

siteIQ evaluated the 20 Food & Beverage Websites listed on the 2020 siteIQ Usability Index. These Websites are categorized into four industry-specific segments including:

  • Beverages (CBrands.com, Coca-Cola.com, KeurigDrPepper.com, PepsiCo.com)
  • Consumer Products (ConagraBrands.com, DeanFoods.com, GeneralMills.com, HormelFoods.com, KraftHeinzCompany.com, LandOLakesInc.com, TheHersheyCompany.com, TreeHouseFoods.com)
  • Food Production (CHSInc.com, Ingredion.com, Sysco.com, TysonFoods.com)
  • Food Services (Darden.com, McDonalds.com, Starbucks.com, Yum.com)

These in-depth evaluations were conducted using the 2020 edition of the siteIQ Usability Index Best Practices Benchmark, which tracks results in 8 sub-categories and 16 Usability Dimensions.

The 2020 evaluations were performed during the first quarter of 2020.

Category: Index Rankings

Class: Website Reviews and Rankings

Websites Profiled: siteIQ Usability Index Websites – Food & Beverage Industry

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