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Costco’s Homepage & Category UX

This is a usability benchmark of the homepage and category experience of Costco and 49 other sites. The overall performance of Costco is mediocre.

Notably, Costco's category performance is hampered by broken Main Navigation and Category Taxonomy, although this is helped somewhat by state of the art Intermediary Category Pages and Site-Wide Layout.

We also benchmarked Costco in 2013. Since then, their overall UX performance is 7% better.

Rank: #49 of 50

Usability Score: 402

URL: costco.com

Reviewer: Edward Scott

Poor
Acceptable
Good

Overall Homepage & Category UX

79 Guidelines · Score: 402 (+7% since 2013)

Current Performance
2013 Performance

Homepage

13 Guidelines · Score: 138.7 (+50%)

Guideline #1: Adhered High · Score: 39.6
Guideline #2: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #3: Violated Low · Score: -14.2
Guideline #4: Violated Low · Score: -14.2
Guideline #5: Adhered Low · Score: 8.5
Guideline #6: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #7: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
Guideline #8: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
Guideline #9: Adhered High · Score: 17.0
Guideline #10: Issue Resolved · Score: 28.3
Guideline #11: Adhered Low · Score: 8.5
Guideline #12: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
Guideline #13: Adhered Low · Score: 8.5
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Category Taxonomy

13 Guidelines · Score: 17.0 (-40%)

“Broken” Performance
Guideline #14: Violated Low · Score: -19.8
Guideline #15: Violated High · Score: -28.3
Guideline #16: Violated High · Score: -39.6
Guideline #17: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #18: Adhered High · Score: 39.6
Guideline #19: Violated High · Score: -34.0
Guideline #20: Adhered High · Score: 45.3
Guideline #21: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #22: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #23: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
Guideline #24: Adhered Low · Score: 14.2
Guideline #25: Violated High · Score: -22.6
Guideline #26: Violated High · Score: -22.6
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Main Navigation

16 Guidelines · Score: 62.3 (-90%)

“Broken” Performance
Guideline #27: Issue Resolved · Score: 39.6
Guideline #28: Adhered High · Score: 45.3
Guideline #29: Neutral · Score: 0.0
Guideline #30: Violated High · Score: -28.3
Guideline #31: Violated Low · Score: -17.0
Guideline #32: Violated Low · Score: -17.0
Guideline #33: Issue Resolved · Score: 34.0
Guideline #34: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #35: Violated High · Score: -22.6
Guideline #36: Violated High · Score: -28.3
Guideline #37: Issue Resolved · Score: 28.3
Guideline #38: Violated High · Score: -22.6
Guideline #39: Adhered High · Score: 22.6
Guideline #40: Issue Resolved · Score: 17.0
Guideline #41: Violated High · Score: -17.0
Guideline #42: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
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Intermediary Category Pages

7 Guidelines · Score: 167.0 (+116%)

“State of the Art” Performance
Guideline #43: Adhered High · Score: 45.3
Guideline #44: Adhered High · Score: 39.6
Guideline #45: Adhered High · Score: 39.6
Guideline #46: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #47: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #48: Violated Low · Score: -14.2
Guideline #49: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
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Product Lists

13 Guidelines · Score: -42.5 (+30%)

“Broken” Performance
Guideline #50: Adhered High · Score: 45.3
Guideline #51: Violated High · Score: -45.3
Guideline #52: Adhered Low · Score: 19.8
Guideline #53: Neutral · Score: 0.0
Guideline #54: Violated High · Score: -45.3
Guideline #55: Violated High · Score: -45.3
Guideline #56: Issue Resolved · Score: 22.6
Guideline #57: Neutral · Score: 0.0
Guideline #58: Violated High · Score: -34.0
Guideline #59: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #60: Adhered High · Score: 17.0
Guideline #61: Issue Resolved · Score: 17.0
Guideline #62: Violated High · Score: -22.6
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Site-Wide Layout

10 Guidelines · Score: 113.2 (-14%)

“State of the Art” Performance
Guideline #63: Violated Low · Score: -14.2
Guideline #64: Issue Resolved · Score: 45.3
Guideline #65: Adhered High · Score: 28.3
Guideline #66: Adhered High · Score: 22.6
Guideline #67: Violated Low · Score: -11.3
Guideline #68: Adhered Low · Score: 8.5
Guideline #69: Issue Resolved · Score: 17.0
Guideline #70: Adhered High · Score: 17.0
Guideline #71: Adhered High · Score: 11.3
Guideline #72: Violated High · Score: -11.3
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Cross-Navigation & -Selling

7 Guidelines · Score: -53.8 ()

“Broken” Performance
Guideline #73: Neutral · Score: 0.0
Guideline #74: Violated Low · Score: -14.2
Guideline #75: Violated High · Score: -28.3
Guideline #76: Violated High · Score: -28.3
Guideline #77: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
Guideline #78: Adhered High · Score: 17.0
Guideline #79: Not Applicable · Score: 0.0
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All 50 sites were benchmarked across the 79 guidelines from the Homepage & Category usability study. During our evaluation, the e-commerce homepage and category design of Costco adhered to 40 usability guidelines, violated 27, and scored neutral on 4 occasions, while a remaining 8 guidelines weren’t applicable.

See methodology to read up on the evaluation criteria and scoring algorithm.

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Industry Comparison: Mass Merchant

Overall Costco ranks 49 when comparing their homepage and category UX performance against the 49 other major US e-commerce sites in the benchmark, and ranks 12 in the Mass Merchant industry.

Poor
Acceptable
Good

1. Sears

“State of the Art” Performance

2. Kohl's

“State of the Art” Performance
“State of the Art” Performance
“State of the Art” Performance

5. Macy's

“State of the Art” Performance

6. Walmart

“State of the Art” Performance

7. Etsy

8. Target

9. Rakuten

10. Amazon

11. Sephora

12. Costco

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