People’s Choice Awards: Retail-Style

In terms of service, how you stack up against the store next door is ultimately decided by the customers you serve. Find-lay, Ohio-based Corporate Research International’s RealPeopleRatings.com released the results of its quarterly customer-service survey that measures how real people rate the retailers they patronize. Retail category-toppers in its most recent study were:

Department stores: Nordstrom, followed by Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale’s;

Shoe stores: Stride Rite, followed by Shoe Carnival and Payless ShoeSource;

Home improvement stores: Ace Hardware, followed by True Value and Lowe’s;

Sporting-goods stores: Dick’s Sporting Goods, followed by Foot Locker and Finish Line;

Electronics stores: RadioShack, followed by Best Buy and Circuit City;

Drug stores: Walgreens, followed by CVS and The Pharm;

Supermarkets: Publix, followed by Kroger and Safeway;

Office-supply stores: Staples, followed by Office Depot and Kinko’s;

Convenience stores: BP, followed by Shell and The Pantry;

Fast-food restaurants: Sonic, followed by Quiznos and Chipotle Mexican Grill (tie);

Full-service restaurants: Olive Garden, followed by Texas Roadhouse and Outback Steakhouse; and

Banks: Credit unions, followed by Washington Mutual and Wachovia.

Respondents were asked to rate their perception of each business’s customer service on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the highest rating.

RealPeopleRatings.com is an insightful way to help companies gather customer feedback about their operation,” said Michael Mallett, CEO of Corporate Research International. “Identifying strengths and areas needing improvement are critical in order to maintain a competitive advantage.”