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    Wegmans, Costco Among Highest in Customer Loyalty: Study

    Albertson’s trailed pack for second straight year

    A benchmarking study surveying more than 23,000 U.S. consumers nationwide found that in the grocery store/supermarket category, Wegmans Food Markets was tops in customer loyalty, garnering 61 points. Meanwhile, Trader Joe’s, the leader for the past four years, fell to fourth place, although only four points separated the top four stores. At the other end of the spectrum, Albertson’s took up the rear for the second consecutive year.

    For the fourth straight year, Costco was first in the department/specialty stores category, with 82 points. Survey respondents said that they appreciated the buying/sign-up experience and value for money, and also rated Costco’s reputation highest in the category, while Kmart and Walmart trailed in the category.

    In the drug store/pharmacy category, Walgreens leapt into the lead, with 42 points, from an undistinguished showing last year; 2013’s leader, Walmart Pharmacy, moved down to second place. Walgreens rated highly on convenience of purchase and staff knowledge.

    Further, in the online shopping category, while Amazon.com came in first for the fifth year in a row with a score of 64 points, Target.com, with 32 points, came in second to last, scoring lowest on company reputation and payment safety.

    Insight Into Consumer Experiences

    “Our 2014 reports provide not only company rankings according to Net Promoter Score, but also direct insight into which everyday customer experiences drive loyalty and are critical to a company’s success,” noted Brendan Rocks, data scientist at Net Promoter Software provider Satmetrix, whose 2014 Net Promoter Industry Benchmarks rank more than 219 brands across 22 U.S. industry sectors. “The Net Promoter leaders in their respective industries have positioned themselves to outpace their competitors in the areas of increased customer retention and acquisition.”

    The surveyed consumers rated their experience with the main brands they use. The Net Promoter Score, or NPS, for each brand is based on customers’ likelihood of recommending the company’s product or service in the sector being rated. NPS is calculated as the percentage of customers who are promoters, rating the company nine or 10 on a zero-to-10-point scale, minus the percentage who are detractors, rating six or lower. Respondents additionally rated each brand on several aspects of customer experience, among them product or service features, customer service, and overall value, enabling San Mateo, Calif.-based Satmetrix to identify the key drivers of loyalty and recommendation.

    Full results from the annual Net Promoter study are available online.

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