Twelve Retailers Flunking Customer Service

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12. Amazon.com
> Change in the past year: -1.1%
> Change since first rating: +2.4%
> Industry: internet retail
> Industry change in past year: +1.3%
> No. of stores: e-commerce only

Although Amazon’s (NASDAQ: AMZN) customer satisfaction score has decreased over the past year, the website maintained the highest score among all e-commerce and retail trade companies. In 2011, the average score for the internet retail industry was 81. Amazon’s was 86. Since ACSI started tracking customer satisfaction for the company in 2000, Amazon’s score has not dropped below the particularly high 84.

11. Charles Schwab
> Change in the past year: -1.3%
> Change since first rating: 3.9%
> Industry: internet brokerage
> Industry change in past year: -2.6%
> No. of stores: 320 U.S. branches

Like Amazon, Charles Schwab’s (NYSE: SCHW) customer satisfaction score has fallen slightly over the past year, yet still remained the highest in its industry. Charles Schwab scored 79 last year, making it tied for the highest among discount brokers along with E*Trade (NASDAQ: ETFC) and Fidelity. Additionally, while Charles Schwab’s customer satisfaction score has decreased 1.3% since last year, the score of the entire internet brokerage industry decreased 2.6%. However, Charles Schwab was the only main player to lose customer satisfaction standing.

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10. Winn-Dixie
> Change in the past year: -1.3%
> Change since first rating: -1.3%
> Industry: supermarkets
> Industry change in past year: +1.3%
> No. of stores: 480 stores and 380 in-store pharmacies

Winn-Dixie (NASDAQ: WINN) is not only one of the lowest scoring supermarkets for customer satisfaction, but it is also one of the lowest scoring among all retailers, which have a customer satisfaction average is 76.1. However, the company’s customer satisfaction score of 75 is an improvement from its 2007 low-point of 71, which occurred two years after the company declared bankruptcy. In December 2011, Winn-Dixie announced that it was being bought by grocery store chain Bi-Lo.

9. CVS Caremark
> Change in the past year: -1.4%
> Change since first rating: -1.4%
> Industry: health and personal care stores
> Industry change in past year: -1.3
> No. of stores: 7,327 retail pharmacies

CVS Caremark’s (NYSE: CVS) customer satisfaction has decreased 1.4% in the past year and 1.4% since the first time the ACSI began recording the metric for the company in 2005. It is now the lowest rated company in the health and personal care stores industry, behind both Rite Aid (NYSE: RAD) and Walgreen (NYSE: WAG). CVS Caremark now has the third-lowest customer satisfaction rating among all major retailers.

8. Office Depot
> Change in the past year: -2.5%
> Change since first rating: 1.3%
> Industry: specialty retail stores
> Industry change in past year: +1.3%
> No. of stores: 1,147

Office Depot’s (NYSE: ODP) customer satisfaction score has increased 1.3% since 2007. Since 2010, however, Office Depot’s customer satisfaction has decreased 2.5%, even as it has increased 1.3% for the sector over the year. Still, it remains one of the highest-rated specialty retail stores. The company is in a tight spot — trying to keep up with larger rival Staples (NASDAQ: SPLS) while facing increasing pressure from OfficeMax (NYSE: OMX).

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7. Staples
> Change in the past year: -2.5%
> Change since first rating: 2.6%
> Industry: specialty retail stores
> Industry change in past year: +1.3%
> No. of stores: 2,281

Staples, like smaller competitor Office Depot, had a 2.5% drop in customer satisfaction in 2011. Customer satisfaction has increased slightly for the company since 2007, when ACSI began tracking it. Incidentally, the company also has a current consumer satisfaction score of 79, the same as Office Depot.