Newsweek and global data research firm Statista have teamed once again to identify America’s Best Customer Service Companies. Based on an independent survey of more than 25,000 U.S. customers, the annual report honors the leaders in customer service in numerous categories including supermarkets, superstores and warehouse club stores, online grocers, and meal kit service providers.
“Whether it’s an intuitive website, a generous return policy or a friendly voice on the other end of the phone, these companies have found a way to put you, the consumer, first,” says Newsweek, which along with Statista asked respondents to rate companies on the following: friendliness of communication, professional competence, range of services, customer focus and accessibility. The full list and article appear online and will be featured in an upcoming print edition of Newsweek.
According to the survey, Publix was the No. 1 supermarket for customer service, followed by Wegmans, Trader Joe’s, Sprouts, and The Fresh Market. These diverse grocers all have distinct formats and operate a range of store locations from just over 100 stores (Wegmans) to over 1,250 stores (Publix).
The nod comes at a time when grocers have faced extreme challenges due to COVID from keeping employees and customers safe to keeping products on the shelves. Not exactly the ideal environment for achieving excellence in customer service.
“While The Fresh Market has always put the needs of our guests first, this recognition is especially meaningful amid the precautionary measures grocery stores have had to put in place over the past seven months like face coverings, plexiglass shields and social distancing that can impede interacting with our guests,” said Jason Potter, president and CEO of The Fresh Market, in a statement. “During these stressful times, it is more important than ever to offer impeccable guest service and hospitality.”
The Fresh Market further reports that since January, its “guest insight scores have increased significantly in the areas of team member recognition for providing exceptional service, overall satisfaction, and staff friendliness.”
“The little touches make a big difference, such as greeting our guests with a smile, walking them to an item they are looking for versus pointing, making a recommendation to complement their meal and overall treating them the same as you would for any guest invited into your home,” added Potter.
Newsweek’s Best Customer Service list included the top three superstores and warehouse club stores. Costco nabbed the No. 1 spot, followed by Meijer and Sam’s Club.
The survey also asked shoppers about their online grocery experiences. AmazonFresh was ranked best, with FreshDirect and Shipt rounding out the top 3.
Meal kit services were also in the mix. Home Chef was No. 1 on the list, followed by Martha and Marley Spoon, and HelloFresh.