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2006 methodology update

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We make a significant revision each year to reflect the evolution of the Internet and its users, the developments in best online practice, the experiences of our customers and the visioning of our research team. As the Web evolves, we make sure to increase the range of our survey. Raising the bar on the CRI scale rewards companies who strive to improve how well they treat their customers. Our 2006 revision sees 16 new questions and a reorganization of the CRI sub-indexes.

New questions
Many of the new questions help to increase our focus on Privacy. For example, we now look for explanations of data security technologies and employee privacy training in privacy policies. We also check for the use of third-party cookies.
We now determine which sites possess characteristics such as disabled back and forward browser buttons and popup windows. Other features we now look for include advanced keyword search facilities, FAQ sections that are easy to find, and 'breadcrumb trails' that help navigation.

The range of questions examining accessibility has also been expanded. For example, we now check if Web pages are built using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for layout, a technique that assists users who browse with screen reader software.

We have also added questions to the Communication area. We now give higher scores to companies that reply to our queries with responses that are both timely (within a day) and fully helpful. We also now check to see whether companies encourage communication through other channels such as the telephone and live chat.

The full list of new CRI questions is shown in the following table.


REFOCUSING OF THE SIX SUB-INDEXES
We have realigned the six CRI sub-indexes so that they each present a more focused view of our survey results. The following table shows the areas that the sub-indexes now concentrate on.



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