Studies: a "yea" and a "nay" for pharma Internet sites

Websites for pharmaceuticals and medical products top the list in terms of customer satisfaction, according to one survey. Another survey, however, finds that drugmakers need to get closer to those seeking medical information and advice online.

First the good news: ForeSee Results finds in its third annual healthcare benchmark study that drug and medical product sites earned an aggregate customer-satisfaction score of 79 of a possible 100 points. It's the highest overall satisfaction score within the healthcare categories measured, with followers including hospitals (77 points) and health insurance company Internet sites (51).

The scores are based on more than 80,000 customer surveys completed in August and September.

Now here's the bad news: A separate survey, run by Accenture, finds that just 11 percent of respondents who say they search online for health advice and information visited a pharma company's website. Many of the sites fall short of engaging visitors and miss out on the opportunity for a two-way dialogue on a level that consumers can understand. Few use social media. The sites are "cold," reports CMIO, and they yield a disconnect that drives visitors instead to online communities, such as forums, and social media outlets.

- here's the thumbs-up story
- see the thumbs-down article