Shock result in study of best and worst supermarkets

Iceland voted best online supermarket, and Waitrose voted best in stores: but who struggled?

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Iceland has been named the best online supermarket - knocking Ocado off the top spot. The Which? study found that Iceland had overtaken both Ocado and Waitrose to nab the title. Waitrose, meanwhile, was voted the best in-store supermarket. But who was bottom of the heap?


Iceland triumphed in a number of areas in the annual customer satisfaction survey of online supermarket shopping. It did well for substitutions - by not making too many, and by making sensible ones where necessary. Most of the supermarkets have made some pretty stunning mistakes in this department - which have done the rounds on social media. Ocado once replaced a lemon cheesecake with salami, while Tesco impressively chose to replace walnut bread with a whole octopus.

Iceland was also voted good value for money, and shoppers liked the number of special offers that were available: overall it scored 77%. It's great news for a chain that has had a number of challenging years and a particularly disappointing Christmas - as it has been squeezed by the discounters. It's also a sign that its website relaunch, along with the upgrading of the product range, is starting to pay off.


Asda, meanwhile, received the worst scores of all the online supermarkets - with an overall rating of just 65%. It did reasonably well for prices, but the website made the process of shopping too difficult for many shoppers to bother with. Social media is full of complaints from people who struggled to find what they needed, couldn't update their details, and suffered site crashes as they came to pay for their shopping.

It emerged last week that the website actually had a security flaw too, which left customer payment details vulnerable - although the report made it clear that the flaw was remedied before hackers had an opportunity to take advantage.

In-store results

Waitrose was voted the best supermarket for in-store shopping. It was particularly rated for the quality of its own brand products, staff and store appearance - and got a score of 75% overall. Marks & Spencer was in second place - followed by Aldi and Lidl.

The Co-operative got the worst in-store scores, rating poorly for the availability of products, value for money and range. This is the third year the brand has taken last place. The store responded to the survey by saying it was based on previous performance, and hadn't taken into account recent improvements - so we will have to see whether it can escape last place next time round.

Tesco was also notable for its low scores, coming second from last. Customers were unimpressed with staff and stock availability. Tesco made the decision to slim down its product offering, and in many cases has taken an axe to large sections of its specialist food ranges. It means that shopping at Tesco has become a frustrating exercise for vegetarians and those with allergies.


The survey also asked people to rate the most irritating things about the supermarkets. They listed long checkout queues, items being out of stock, misleading special offers and the prices of products changing too often as their biggest bugbears.

Alex Neill, Which? Director of Campaigns said: "While value for money remains a high priority, people want special offers to genuinely be special and they want a pleasant in-store shopping experience. When it comes to online shopping, we know convenient and low cost delivery slots are prominent factors in where people choose to shop."

But what do you think? Do you agree with the study, or does your local supermarket fly in the face of the findings? Let us know in the comments.

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