MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Survey: These two retailers satisfy gas customers

BY Dan Berthiaume

Louisville, Colo. – When it comes to filling their tanks, consumers are most satisfied by two retailers.

Wawa and Costco are the most satisfying gas station/convenience store and wholesale/grocery/big box retailers for fuel, respectively, according to a new survey of 6,935 U.S. consumers by Market Force Information.

Wawa ranked highest among c-store/gas stations with 68%, edging out QuikTrip, which was second with a score of 62% and Sheetz was third with 59%. All of the top three are corporate-owned, regional brands. Speedway and Phillips 66 tied for fourth, with Phillips 66 emerging as the highest-ranking national brand.

When Market Force ranked the top wholesale clubs, grocers and big-box chains, three wholesale clubs led the pack – Costco ranked first, BJ’s Wholesale Club was second and Sam’s Club was third. Kroger and Walmart rounded out the top five.

While the majority of motorists still fuel up at traditional gas stations and convenience stores, grocers and wholesale clubs continue to gain ground. For their most recent trip to the pump, 69% said they visited a gas station or convenience store, while 31% chose a grocery, wholesale club or big-box chain.

For the rankings, Market Force asked participants to rate their satisfaction with their most recent gas station or convenience store experience, and their likelihood to refer that store brand to others.

Market Force also evaluated how gas station and convenience store brands are delivering on a spectrum of attributes that impact customer satisfaction, such as service and appearance. Chevron ranked highest for fuel quality and Arco was voted the fuel price-leader. Wawa, took the top spot in the fresh food category. QuikTrip came in first for customer service and appearance for a second consecutive year. Sheetz’s loyalty program was a clear favorite, and it also tied with Wawa for quality coffee.

When Market Force examined how grocery stores, wholesale clubs and big-box retailers were delivering these attributes, Costco took the top spot in five of the nine categories, including fuel quality, fuel price, customer service, appearance and brand reputation. BJ’s also performed well, leading on ease of entry and exit and good coffee, and tying with Costco for fresh food. Kroger ranked first for its loyalty program by a large margin.

Ten percent of study participants said they have used a gas app. Generation X reported the highest usage rates, although there was little differentiation across age groups. When asked which features they have used within a gas app, gas price comparison came out on top at 78%, followed by finding a gas station and reporting gas prices.

GasBuddy, which uses crowdsourcing to check for the cheapest gas prices in an area, is the most popular app, with 69% of gas app users indicating they have used it.

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C-SUITE

Mavericks CEO jumps to Under Armour

BY Dan Berthiaume

Baltimore – An executive from the sports world is moving into the retail arena.

Terdema L. Ussery II has joined Under Armour Inc. as president, global sports categories, effective Sept. 14, 2015. Ussery previously served as the president and CEO of the Dallas Mavericks NBA team for the past 18 years.

In his new position, Ussery will be responsible for spearheading category management across all key brand and business units around the world to drive authenticity and connectivity with consumers.

Under Ussery, the Mavericks more than tripled their revenue and exponentially increased their media and digital footprint by establishing new and expanding existing media partnerships across multiple platforms.

Previously, Ussery held the position of president of Nike Sports Management.

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OPERATIONS

Cabela’s Club Visa ready for growth

BY Dan Berthiaume

Sidney, Neb. – Cabela’s Inc. has 400 million new reasons to feel confident about the growth of its Club Visa credit card portfolio.

The retailer has closed a $400 million securitization transaction, including $240 million of Class A-1 Notes with fixed annual interest of 2.25%, and $100 million of Class A-2 Notes with interest at a floating rate equal to one-month LIBOR plus 0.67% per year.

Cabela’s also issued three subordinated classes of notes worth $60 million, which were purchased by Cabela’s wholly-owned subsidiary World's Foremost Bank. All proceeds will help finance the growth of Cabela’s Club Visa.

“We are thrilled to announce the completion of our second SEC registered term securitization for 2015,” said Tommy Millner, Cabela’s CEO. “There has been some recent volatility in the market so we are pleased with the mix of fixed and floating rate funding achieved in this transaction.”

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