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Customer Satisfaction: Grocery Shopping vs. Internet Retail

Friday, March 4th, 2016

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) recently reported declines in customer satisfaction across five different retail industries. Of those, Supermarkets registered their lowest ACSI score in more than 10 years (73). According to the report, grocery store shoppers were the most unsatisfied with checkout speed (72) and the quality of pharmacy services (76).

The ACSI also reported that, despite falling a couple points, InternetRetail earned higher customer satisfaction scores than other retail industries. ACSI concluded that shoppers prefer online shopping compared to traditional in-store experiences.This might be an overstatement, because customers could be more satisfied with their online shopping experience vs. in-store experience because they have separate expectations of each.

Interestingly, the report showed the things that irk in-store grocery shoppers—checkout speed and navigation—are the most highly rated experience bench marks of online shopping.

Both InternetRetail and Supermarket industries scored lower marks for staff courtesy and helpfulness (grocery) and the helpfulness of customer support (online).

So what can the Supermarket industry take away from this report? Grocery retailers are already building and adopting omni-channel solutions, but perhaps they could also take a page from Internet Retailers. Stores could find ways to innovate the checkout experience and make navigation easier, perhaps incorporating digital solutions in the aisle. Also, in an era of one-click transactions, Supermarkets shouldn’t lose sight of the importance of their people: they should continue to improve customer support and staff helpfulness.

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