Anyone who has been on a website and got stuck for whatever reason, will know the real meaning of the word 'frustration'. Likewise with those automated call routers they use in call centres. Everyone hates them but they seem to get ever more convoluted and designed simply to get you further away from speaking to anyone.
There are some websites that are so difficult to navigate, it's a wonder that they manage any sales at all and those always seem to be the websites that either don't have a phone number or hide it somewhere so obscure that it is, to all intents and purposes, invisible.
"A genuine internet company doesn't need human intervention or phone numbers. Everything can be totally automated," according to some internet entrepreneurs."
Even if 99% of things you would want to do on a website are covered, there's always the 1% that aren't.
People's desire to just want to talk to a human being about a purchase often means that even if the website does have the answer, a phone number is the difference between a satisfied customer and a frustrated one.
Why do so many companies fail to recognise this?