The American Customer Satisfaction Index Retail and Consumer Shipping
Report for 2018-19 was published earlier this month and has some surprising
news for those who believe that Amazon is untouchable. Costco climbed past the
online giant to be named the most satisfying retailer in America.
Amazon has held the top spot for the past nine years and their rate of innovation has actually increased so it’s a surprise to see them toppled. Inside Retail magazine suggested that their slowing retail growth, caused by the Whole Foods acquisition, has allowed a chance for rivals to catch up.
Although most respondents to this research say that online shopping is
the most satisfying way to shop, there has been little change or improvement in
how this works in the past year – in many cases retailer standards have
declined. Mobile app quality and reliability is a particular issue facing
retailers today – a problem that most retailers would barely have even
considered just five years ago is now a significant factor in customer
Nobody can deny how powerful Amazon has become in American retail, but
some of the old brands are not ready to go down without a fight. To see Costco
named as the most satisfying retailer to shop with, pushing Amazon into second
place, shows that if retailers take a step back and focus on innovation and the
customer experience then they can succeed.
I wrote last year about the interesting partnership between Walmart and Microsoft and how these two giants intend to work together on retail innovation. It is precisely this attitude that will ensure we see continued healthy competition and innovation in retail. I love what Amazon is doing with all their new ideas for retail, but it’s great to see that they are not the only game in town.