retail news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

Market research company Temkin Group is out with a survey of some 6,000 American consumers and a ranking of how the best retailers stand in terms of customer service.

The top-10 customer service entities are listed as, in order:

• Amazon.com
• Kohl’s
• Costco
• Lowe’s
• Sam’s Club
• BJ’s Wholesale Club
• Walgreens
• Old Navy
• Target
• Rite Aid

Among the notes in the report:

“Consumers rated companies they interacted with the past 60 days in 12 industries: airlines, banks, credit-card issuers, health plans, hotel chains, Internet service providers, insurance companies, investment firms, PC makers, retailers, TV service providers, and wireless carriers.”

“Retailers took 15 of the top 20 spots. The only non-retailers in the top-20 were three hotel chains (Marriot International, Hyatt, and Courtyard By Marriott), one bank (Regions Financial), and an insurance company (USAA).”

“Anthem Insurance Companies and CIGNA were two of the seven health plans that ended up in the bottom 13 ranked companies.”

I’m not surprised by Amazon’s ranking, nor by the fact that USAA is ranked highly while CIGNA and Anthem get really low rankings. I’ve dealt consistently with all these companies, and my experience bears this out.

I am very surprised by how high Rite Aid ranks, which would seem to be at odds with its popular image. And I think there is a lot to learn from the high rankings of three membership clubs - clearly there is something about an inconvenient experience based on a treasure hunt that appeals to consumers. I’d be looking to see what about that shopping experience could be mimicked in more traditional outlets.

It’s all an Eye-Opener.
KC's View: