Few Grocers on the Top 100 E-retail List

May 05, 2010

Good news: Consumers are more satisfied with websites that sell food and drug products than a year ago.

Good news: Consumers are more satisfied with websites that sell food and drug products than a year ago. Bad news: Safeway.com is the only grocery chain on the list of the nation’s Top 100 e-retailers overall, as revealed in new study results released by ForeSee today.

The food-and-drug category of e-retailers posted an overall consumer satisfaction score of 78 on a scale of 100, up seven percent from the 73 it earned in 2009. Safeway.com came in the lowest of the leaders at 74, up six percent from the 70 it posted in 2009. Home deliverers Peapod.com and FreshDirect.com both edged ahead with scores of 76 and 75 respectively.

Keurig.com topped the food-and-drug category with an 82 score, above these operators as well: drugstore.com (80, up from 77), HarryandDavid.com (80, up from 75); WeightWatchers.com (80, up from 75), SwissColony.com (79, up from 75), CVS.com (78, up from 71), Walgreens.com (77, up from 75), and Nutrisystem.com (74, up from 68), the data showed.

Mass merchants that also sell considerable amounts of food and drug merchandise include Amazon.com (86, up from 84), Walmart.com (80, up from 77), Costco.com (78, up from 74) and Target.com (78, up from 75) – all above the Safeway.com score.

Based on its six-year history of this twice-annual survey (this time of more than 23,000 visitors to Top 100 e-retail websites by dollar sales volume), ForeSee projects a value of $89 million in incremental annual sales volume for each single-point rise in customer satisfaction. ForeSee says a “highly satisfied online shopper” is 73% likelier to buy from the e-retailer than a dissatisfied online shopper. Also, a “highly satisfied online visitor” is 47% likelier to buy offline and 72% likelier to recommend the website.

“The Web channel has become a more important influence than ever before on the relationship between retailers and customers. With this evolution comes the need for a more sophisticated, forward-looking set of customer metrics that will enable retailers to gauge not just the success of a single visit, but how well the website supports the entire customer experience across all channels,” reads the report.

With such a strong connection between online satisfaction and retailer performance, The Lempert Report urges grocery chains to use their websites as a fulcrum for greater enterprise performance. They could do that, we believe, by showcasing the merchandise, prices, ‘eating healthy’ content, meal assembly tips, savings tools and targeted coupons for registered visitors that would make their stores into hotter destinations.