New Business Metric Identifies Loyalty Leaders in Grocery

Global management consulting firm Bain & Company is launching a version of its benchmarking platform for the grocery sector. The cloud-based service, called the NPS Prism, provides actionable insights from more 50,000 consumers shopping in-store and online at dozens of food retailers.

Net Promoter Score (NPS) benchmarks are based on customer ratings of stores, products and services. Developed by Bain & Company, the tool is commonly used to assess consumer loyalty and other factors such as performance.

The new grocery-specific platform enables retailers to identify leaders within various market segments. According to Bain’s insights, regional grocer H-E-B is the overall loyalty leader with the highest relationship score. In the warehouse club category, Costco earned the highest NPS, while Aldi ranked at the top of discounters and Amazon came in first for online merchants that sell grocery items.

When using this business metric, grocers can determine their own score compared to their competitors and identify experiences that resonate among shoppers. Information is also available on where else customers do business and why.

“Grocery has been one of the sectors most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Jason Barro, a Bain & Company partner and founder of NPS Prism. “Consumer habits shifted rapidly, accelerating some existing trends and redefining customer expectations. Loyalty in this industry is crucial  deeper relationships mean customers that spend more in stores and refer others to the chain in a favorable way. NPS Prism is an essential benchmarking service for grocers to understand how they stack up versus competitors in the specific situations that matter the most to their clients.”

In addition to gauging shopper perceptions and loyalty, the NPS Prism platform reveals other issues impacting grocers’ business. Chief among those issues right now are labor shortages and high shopper expectations related to the in-store experience. Bain & Company’s latest data shows that customers want friendly, knowledgeable staff and will give grocers low scores if they encounter associates who they deem unfriendly or unhelpful.

With approximately 400 stores in Texas and Mexico, San Antonio-based H-E-B is No. 13 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of top food and consumables retailers in North America. Issaquah, Wash.-based Costco is No. 4, Batavia, Ill.-based Aldi U.S. is No. 24 and Seattle-based Amazon is No. 2 on PG’s list.