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Survey: Customer satisfaction down, technology key to improvement


Ann Arbor, Mich. - Despite economic indicators that show the recession is over, customers are slightly less satisfied in 2015 than they were the prior year. According to CFI Group's Retail Satisfaction Barometer 2015, the RSB score for 2015 is 79 on a 0-100 scale (with 100 being the highest possible score), a one-point drop from 2014.

This drop was fueled by decreases across major drivers of satisfaction: Associates (down one point to 79), Merchandise (down two points to 83) and Price (down two points to 80). Consumers' intentions to increase spending also declined by two points (72 vs. 70).

In its third year of measuring consumer satisfaction with the retail experience using the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) methodology, the RSB breaks out data into five market segments: traditional department stores (e.g. Macy's), large-format discount stores (e.g. Target), mall-based specialty stores (e.g. Williams Sonoma), freestanding specialty stores (e.g. Best Buy) and grocery stores (e.g. Kroger).

The only segment to increase satisfaction scores from 2014 was large-format discount stores (up four points from 75 to 79). The rest decreased slightly. Despite a two-point drop from 2014, grocery stores still have the highest overall satisfaction rating of 81.

However, 61% of respondents used some type of technology-based solution at a retailer, be it self-checkout registers, in-store kiosks or checkout via a roaming store associate. Among the 20% who used in-store kiosks, higher satisfaction scores are reported mostly across the board and their likelihood to spend more increased.

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