Employee-owned Waitrose tops survey for customer loyalty

Waitrose is the number one retailer when it comes to customer loyalty, according to new research by Marker Force Information. The study, which aimed to reveal customers’ shopping...

Waitrose is the number one retailer when it comes to customer loyalty, according to new research by Marker Force Information. The study, which aimed to reveal customers’ shopping habits, looked at brand preference, engagement, experience and the use of social media among the 6,800 consumers surveyed.

Participants were also asked to rate their satisfaction with their recent grocery shopping experience and the likelihood to refer the grocer to others. The results were averaged to rank each of the eights brands corresponding to the major retailers on a Composite Loyality Index.

The survey examined six attributes for delivering consumer satisfaction. Employee owned Waitrose came on top of the list, with 67% of consumers saying they would recommend it to others. The supermarket was ranked first in five of the six categories: cashier courtesy, store cleanliness, ability to find items, availability of items and specialty department service. In terms of checkout speed, Waitrose came second, being overtaken by Aldi.

The Co-operative was also included in the research. The retailer was ranked seventh in the Composite Loyalty Index with 31% of customers likely to recommend it to others. The Co-op took the fourth place for cashier courtesy and store cleanliness. In terms of the ability to find items, the convenience retailer came last in customer’s preferences. Similarly, the Co-operative was ranked eighth for availability of items and specialty department service. Around 33% of customers would also recommend the Co-op for checkout speed, a category in which the retailer came fifth.

“The competition between supermarkets is extremely fierce,” said Cheryl Fink, chief strategy officer for Market Force Information. “Our research clearly shows that one in three shoppers reported that brands did not execute well on any of the six drivers; but when they do on all six, satisfaction improves dramatically (by 89%). Furthermore, when supermarkets deliver across all six attributes, shoppers are almost three times more likely to recommend it to others. That’s a huge increase and one that supermarkets need to pay attention to in today’s market conditions.”

A spokesperson for Waitrose also said: “We are so pleased to have been named the UK’s favourite supermarket in Market Force’s customer survey. Waitrose is dedicated to providing our customers with the best possible service and for all of our Partners, who own our business, it will mean a lot to have their hard work recognised in this way.”

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