SOURCE: E Source

E Source

November 13, 2013 15:00 ET

E Source Announces the Top Utility Websites

BOULDER, CO--(Marketwired - Nov 13, 2013) - According to the latest E Source benchmark study, the top-rated US electric and gas utility websites belong to Wisconsin Public Service, Pacific Gas and Electric, and Avista Utilities. Énergie NB Power, BC Hydro, and Union Gas Limited host the top-rated Canadian utility websites. For Wisconsin Public Service and Énergie NB Power, this is the second time these organizations have come out on top in their respective regions. They held the number one spots in the 2011 benchmarking study.

Utilities are succeeding in enhancing the customer experience via the website, and usability scores, which measure how easy it is to use a feature on a website, continue to improve. In particular, the usability score for the Make a Payment feature has dramatically increased. "The improvement in the usability score for the Make a Payment feature is encouraging," says Rich Goodwin, manager of Customer Experience & Marketing at E Source. "Think about it: Customers want to pay their bill online. But by and large, utilities were not making it easy to do so. This should be one of the highest-rated features for usability."

The look and feel of the websites also showed improvement. "Top utilities are providing aesthetically pleasing websites by using big, bold text and bright colors. And we found that more utilities are offering mobile-optimized features on their websites than ever before," says Haley Kaiser, a Market Research Services analyst at E Source.

Regional rankings are as follows:

  • Canada: Énergie NB Power, BC Hydro, Union Gas Limited
  • US, Midwest: Wisconsin Public Service, Vectren Corp., Ameren Illinois
  • US, Northeast: PPL Electric Utilities, PECO, NSTAR
  • US, South: Duke Energy, Florida Power & Light Co., Duke Energy
  • US, West: Pacific Gas and Electric, Avista, Portland General Electric

Rankings per utility type:

  • Electric: Énergie NB Power, PPL Electric Utilities, Duke Energy
  • Gas: Southern California Gas Co., Nicor Gas Co., NW Natural
  • Combined gas and electric: Wisconsin Public Service, Pacific Gas and Electric, Avista

The E Source Review of North American Electric and Gas Company Residential Websites: 2013 assessed the websites of 101 US and Canadian utilities. Between April and July 2013, a group of 16 residential customers accessed and used the top 30 web and mobile features (both informational and transactional) that were identified by E Source market research, input from industry thought leaders, and E Source expertise as the features residential customers most wanted to see on their utility's website. As in the past utility website benchmarks, E Source tested these features using mobile devices and laptop computers.

2013 Performance Ranking of US and Canadian Residential Websites

Functionality and average usability ratings were combined with equal weighting to determine the overall performance index, which has a maximum possible value of 1,000. The websites were then ranked in descending order.

Rank   Company name   Score
Top quartile
1   Wisconsin Public Service   923
2   Pacific Gas and Electric   873
3   Avista   851
4   Énergie NB Power   845
5   Vectren Corp.   841
6   PPL Electric Utilities   839
7   Duke Energy Progress   838
8   Ameren Illinois   837
8   Duke Energy   837
8   Florida Power & Light Co.   837
8   PECO   837
12   BC Hydro   833
12   ComEd   833
12   Dominion   833
15   American Electric Power   832
16   Ameren Missouri   828
16   Georgia Power   828
18   Baltimore Gas and Electric Co.   821
19   NSTAR   820
19   Portland General Electric   820
21   NIPSCO   818
21   SRP (Salt River Project)   818
23   Alliant Energy   815
23   DTE Energy   815
25   KCP&L   808
26   Southern California Gas Co.   806
         
         
         
Rank   Company name   Score
Second quartile
27   Nicor Gas Co.   802
28   NW Natural   794
28   South Carolina Electric and Gas (SCANA)   794
30   Peoples Gas   793
30   Union Gas Limited   793
32   Sacramento Municipal Utility District   791
33   Los Angeles Department of Water and Power   789
34   Black Hills Energy   787
35   Alabama Power   784
35   Jersey Central Power & Light   784
35   Pepco Holdings   784
38   Arizona Public Service (APS)   782
39   NV Energy   780
39   TXU Energy   780
41   Entergy Corp.   775
42   Consolidated Edison Co. of New York (Con Edison)   760
43   Otter Tail Power Co.   757
44   FortisBC Natural Gas   756
45   PacifiCorp   754
46   Memphis Light Gas & Water Division   751
46   SaskPower   751
48   Columbia Gas of Pennsylvania   747
49   Public Service Electric & Gas   746
50   Nashville Electric Service   742
51   SaskEnergy   733
         
         
         
Rank   Company name   Score
Third quartile
52   Hydro Ottawa   731
53   Nova Scotia Power   728
54   Toronto Hydro Electric System   726
55   Newfoundland Power   722
55   Philadelphia Gas Works   722
57   Southern California Edison   717
58   Gainesville Regional Utilities   713
59   Madison Gas and Electric Co.   708
60   Enbridge Gas Distribution   707
60   Xcel Energy   707
62   Consumers Energy   702
63   Hydro-Québec   699
64   National Grid   693
65   New York State Electric & Gas   692
66   Seattle City Light   685
67   Indianapolis Power & Light Co.   677
68   Puget Sound Energy   676
69   CenterPoint Energy   666
69   Westar Energy   666
71   CPS Energy   661
72   PNM   655
73   Long Island Power Authority   654
74   Silicon Valley Power   651
75   MidAmerican Energy   644
76   San Diego Gas & Electric   640
         
         
         
Rank   Company name   Score
Fourth quartile
77   Atmos Energy   634
78   City of Palo Alto Utilities   627
78   We Energies   627
80   Duquesne Light   618
81   Hydro One   617
81   NorthWestern Energy   617
83   Piedmont Natural Gas   615
84   Questar Gas   613
85   Tampa Electric Co.   612
85   Washington Gas   612
87   Oklahoma Natural Gas   608
88   Dayton Power and Light Co.   606
88   OG&E   606
90   Reliant Energy   590
91   Manitoba Hydro   588
92   Idaho Power Co.   586
93   EPCOR   582
94   Laclede Gas   580
95   Southwest Gas Corp.   567
96   Cleco Power LLC   565
97   National Fuel Gas   558
98   Austin Energy   557
99   New Mexico Gas Co.   550
100   ENMAX   536
101   Direct Energy   526

Source: "E Source Review of North American Electric and Gas Company Residential Websites: 2013"
Charts and graphs extracted from this press release must be accompanied by a statement identifying E Source as the publisher and "E Source Review of North American Electric and Gas Company Residential Websites: 2013" as the source. No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in this release without the express prior written consent of E Source.

For more information about this comprehensive study, please visit www.esource.com/Web_Review_History.

About E Source
For 25 years, E Source has been providing unbiased, objective research and advisory services to over 300 utilities and large energy users. Our energy experts have answered more than 8,000 questions over the past 3 years. This guidance helps our customers advance their efficiency programs, enhance customer relationships, and use energy more efficiently.

Contact Information

  • Public Relations Contact
    Kym Wootton
    Senior Manager of Marketing & Communications
    E Source
    kym_wootton@esource.com
    303-345-9168