Netflix Plummets in Customer Satisfaction

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) - Netflix ( NFLX) had a tough year. The embattled video company saw shares tumble more than 60% amid a series of blunders that included mishandling a subscription price hike and confusing consumers with plans to split up the company's DVD-by-mail and subscription businesses.

CEO Reed Hastings, who took a $1.5 million pay cut after the company's turbulent year, was also named the worst CEO of the year by readers of TheStreet.

Netflix CEO Reed Hastings

It may come as little surprise then that customer satisfaction at Netflix declined this year more so than any other online retailer survey surveyed by analytics firm ForeSee. Netflix, which had previously topped the poll in previous years along with Amazon ( AMZN), saw its customer satisfaction slide 7 points to 79 on the study's 100-point scale.

"Netflix totally misread its customer base and is paying the price, damaging its brand among both consumers and investors," ForeSee president and CEO Larry Freed said in a press release. "Raising prices by 60% and splitting the baby into separate DVD and streaming services totally undermines Netflix's cost and convenience advantages. Customer satisfaction is predictive, which means that Netflix's financial woes may be just beginning."

Besides Netflix, other online retailers also saw declines in customer satisfaction, including Gap ( GPS) and Overstock ( OSTK), whose scores dropped to 73 and 72, respectively.

Shares of Netflix fell 0.8% in late morning trading on Thursday to $68.63.

--Written by Olivia Oran in New York

>To follow the writer on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/Ozoran.

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