Customer Engagement by a Knowledgeable Sales Staff Is Key to Appliance Shopper Satisfaction

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.: 10 July 2014 — A knowledgeable sales staff providing a prompt, courteous and engaging customer service experience helps drive satisfaction with home appliance retailers, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Appliance Retailer Satisfaction StudySM released today.

The study, now in its seventh year, measures customer satisfaction with the largest appliance retailers based on performance in six factors: sales staff and service; store facility; merchandise; price; delivery service; and installation service.

For the first time since study inception, h.h. gregg ranks highest in appliance retailer customer satisfaction, achieving a score of 819 (on a 1,000-point scale) and performing particularly well in the sales staff, delivery and installation service factors. Lowe’s (815) ranks second, performing well in the store facility and price factors, and ties with Sears in the merchandise factor.

“While price remains a leading driver for more than half of customers when selecting an appliance store, retailers can’t rely on price alone to remain competitive,” said Christina Cooley, director of the home improvement practice at J.D. Power. “The sales staff has an opportunity to differentiate the customer experience through engagement activities from the moment a customer walks in the door, all the way through appliance selection, delivery and installation. It’s the simple engagement activities—those that don’t require extensive training—that have a huge impact on customer satisfaction. For example, when the sales staff has a great attitude, greets customers and offers them help as soon as they enter the store, this can go a long way toward increasing satisfaction, additional purchases and recommendations.”

KEY FINDINGS

  • Providing a knowledgeable, courteous and readily available sales staff is key in driving a satisfying customer experience.
  • More than 9 in 10 (91%) customers indicate that staff was available to assist them during their recent appliance shopping experience and 77 percent indicate they were greeted promptly. Among customers who engage with the appliance retail sales staff, 86 percent indicate the staff listened to their questions and concerns.
  • In 2014, fewer customers indicate that multiple brands were discussed while shopping than in 2013 (58% vs. 63%, respectively), but only 14 percent say the salesperson tried to steer them toward a specific brand.
  • More than three-fourths (77%) of customers indicate the store carried all of the brands they were seeking, and 63 percent indicate the retailer had the desired appliance in stock at the store.
  • On average, customers make two to three visits to the same retailer before purchasing an appliance, and 38 percent indicate they only shop one retailer and don’t consider others.
  • More than one-half (52%) of customers rely on the appliance retailer to deliver and install their new appliances.
  • Overall customer satisfaction with appliance retailers is 804, up from 789 in the 2013 study.

The 2014 Appliance Retailer Satisfaction Study is based on responses from more than 2,900 customers who purchased a laundry or kitchen appliance within the previous 12 months from a major appliance retailer. The study was fielded between January 2014 and March 2014.

Media Relations Contacts

Syvetril Perryman; Westlake Village, Calif.; 805-418-8103; [email protected]

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