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Waitrose top of the shops while Aldi and Lidl trump ‘big four’

28th January 2010 Print

Waitrose is the UK's favourite supermarket while bargain superstores Aldi and Lidl came joint third in a survey from consumer champion Which? .

The ‘big four' supermarkets - Sainsbury's, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons - may be where most Which? members did their main shop, but customer satisfaction scores ranged from just 49% to 58%.

In contrast, Waitrose stormed into first place with happy customers giving it a rating of 79%, with one commenting on the ‘superior quality of food' and another describing shopping there as ‘a pleasure'.  The store only fell down in terms of price.

Also doing well in the supermarket league were Aldi and Lidl, in joint third place with a score of 61%.  These bargain superstores matched the big four on product quality, including the quality of fresh fruit and veg, but beat them on price.  However, the smaller range of products may be why shoppers were more likely to use these for a ‘top up' shop rather than their main shop.

Bargain shopping baskets alone clearly weren't enough to win shoppers' approval - Netto was bottom of the league, with a poor customer score of just 41%.  One member likened their experience in the store to ‘shopping in a junk shop'.

Which? Chief Executive, Peter Vicary-Smith, says: "The success of some budget supermarkets in our survey proves that savvy shoppers can make the most of their money without compromising on quality.

"UK shoppers want the whole package - great value for money, a wide range of quality products, and a pleasant shopping environment. It's not rocket science, but those supermarkets that consistently get it wrong should beware - shoppers will vote with their feet and take their business elsewhere."

Online supermarkets tended to fare better than their high street counterparts, although their position in the league table remains broadly the same, with coming joint top with Ocado, with an 80% satisfaction score.