I’m sure every retailer out there – except Rochester, N.Y.-based Wegmans – is feeling a little like Jan Brady right now with yet another naming them some version of of “America’s Favorite Grocer.”
Say it with me here:
Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!
Wegmans, Wegmans, Wegmans!
Of course, Wegmans’ reputation in grocery is well-deserved, for a lot of reasons, and I’m not disparaging the fantastic job they do to lead and innovate, especially in fresh produce and prepared foods.
But, how can a retailer that’s accessible to a small percentage of the U.S. be their favorite?
The rankings come from an upcoming release of Market Force Information’s 2018 Grocery Benchmark Survey, a survey of just under 13,000 consumers conducted in April, which asked respondents about their grocery habits, brand preference, customer experience, brand engagement and brand awareness.
Market Force uses a Composite Loyalty Index, a score based on how respondents rate satisfaction with the most recent shopping experience and likelihood they will refer the chain to others to create the media’s “favorite” thing to talk about this week in grocery.
Wegmans topped the list at 77%, followed by Publix at 76% and Trader Joe’s at 75%. Aldi came in fourth at 70%, and H-E-B scored a 69%. Walmart and Safeway were at the bottom of the list of 22 retailers ranked at 42% and 34%.
See a pattern here? Three of the top five are regional players, which doesn’t surprise me. Regional retailers like San Antonio-based H-E-B (my local grocer), Lakeland, Fla.-based Publix Super Markets and Wegmans typically top these lists with their almost-rabid loyal shoppers.
But what we’re really here for is consumer opinions on their retailer’s fresh produce, right? So, I reached out to Market Force to get some produce-specific numbers.
When asked why they choose to spend the majority of their grocery shopping dollars at a their primary grocer, respondents were given a list of traits, including location, sales and promotions, value, cleanliness, variety, courteous staff and high quality produce.
Thirty-one percent of respondents said their primary grocer excels at high quality fresh produce.
Market Force shared the percentage of shoppers who said their grocer excels at high quality produce, too, and there’s some great numbers here.
Not surprisingly, Wegmans scored high, with 65.9% of its shoppers saying they shop this brand for high quality produce.
Who else did shoppers choose because of fantastic produce? Here are the retailers that scored above 50%:
- Reasor’s 90.0%
- Earth Fare 72.2%
- Hannaford Supermarkets 65.9%
- Raley’s Family of Fine Foods 65.7%
- Whole Foods Market 65.6%
- Sprouts Farmers Market 65.5%
- Publix 52.0%
Fresh produce also is a reason for shoppers to switch primary grocers, according to the survey. Of the 5% of respondents who said they plan to change in the next 90 days, “better quality fresh produce” was the No. 4 reason to switch.
Better sales and promotions was the top reason to change to a different grocer.