Consumers rate SA's best supermarkets
By Jeremy Maggs - Mar 28th, 11:28
In an intensifying war for consumer share and brand growth and recognition, SA’s big five supermarket brands will need to do more to differentiate themselves when it comes to customer satisfaction.
That’s the top line from the latest SA Customer Satisfaction Index for Supermarkets (2018) by research firm Consulta. The survey looks at Woolworths, Pick n Pay, Spar, Checkers and Shoprite.
Woolworths and Spar stood out as front-runners in the survey. Woolworths maintains the best overall customer experience rating, but the gap between it and the others has diminished since 2016. Spar has achieved significant gains in almost all measures of customer satisfaction thanks to its focus since 2014 on "convenience location".
The study shows the increasing complexity faced by supermarkets in meeting customer expectations. It says that as economic pressure intensifies, retailers will need to invest in understanding how this affects consumer behaviour and how they can create exceptional experiences for their customers.
On perceived value, (how much value customers feel they received for the price paid against the quality of the experience) Checkers was tops, though only Spar showed a marked increase in its perceived value score from 2016.
It is notable that Woolworths struggles on this score, which is driving the perception that it is the most expensive supermarket brand.
All do well on handling complaints, compared with world standards (scoring close to 50%). Checkers fared best, Shoprite was rated lowest.
Pick n Pay recorded the most customer complaints specifically about expired food, incorrect shelf prices and its Smart Shopper loyalty card. Shoprite had the lowest customer loyalty score, markedly down from 2016. Woolworths had the highest loyalty score (up slightly) indicating still-strong brand equity.
At a time when extreme economic pressure and fast-changing technology strongly influence shoppers, customer satisfaction is a big deal — and getting it right is complex and multifaceted, says Prof Adré Schreuder, founder of the survey.
"We have come a very long way from when all it took was some customer service from efficient and friendly staff to do the job," he says. "The context of retail has evolved rapidly, to extend across bricks-and-mortar experience to online and digital presence. And consumer concerns such as value, time, experience, healthy eating and ethical living are culminating in a continuum of disconnect between shoppers’ expectations and the retailers’ ability to satisfy them."
The survey also notes the following:
• In tough economic times the price of goods is likely to influence consumer loyalty;
• Though Woolworths used to have the advantage of differentiation in in-store design, experience and packaging, which appealed to the upper end of the market, competitors have made significant headway; and
• Spar’s sustained focus on community involvement and convenience location has borne fruit.
Shoprite Angola makes substantial food donation
14/06/2019 - 11:30
More than 2300 children across Angola recently benefited from food donations from all 14 Shoprite stores in the country.
Five things you need to know about the pharmaceutical industry
14/06/2019 - 11:10
The pharmaceutical sector - both locally and globally - is following suite with general retail and going through uncertain times. More consumers are shopping the basics with baskets of necessities only. As CEO of the Shoprite Group, Pieter Engelbrecht, said in response to their interim results (which speak for the average South African), “In the external operating environment, economic conditions have left the group's core customer under significant financial pressure.”
Shoprite opens its first distribution centre in Botswana
13/06/2019 - 09:40
Shoprite Botswana recently opened its own world-class distribution centre (DC) in Taung, Gaborone.
British online fashion retailer Boohoo bucks subdued industry trend
13/06/2019 - 09:12
British online fashion group Boohoo bucked a tough retail market with robust sales growth in its latest quarter as its offer of cheap clothing, delivered quickly, chimed with shoppers.
Woolworths share price recovers on renewed optimism
13/06/2019 - 09:04
Shares in Woolworths have rebounded in recent weeks, thanks to a recovery in the sector and optimism that the worst may be over for the high-end retailer, whose foray into Australia has proven costly for investors.