Marks & Spencer (MKS.L) has been crowned the UK's favourite supermarket in a survey by consumer group Which?. It ranked the UK's biggest supermarkets on in-store shopping experience, store appearance, product range and value for money.
M&S received a 78% customer score in the survey of 3,000 UK shoppers, with customers praising its store appearance, customer service and the quality of its own brand and fresh products.
Aldi came a close second, with a 77% customer score. The budget retailer was the only supermarket to receive top marks for value for money but was let down by its long queues.
Waitrose rounded out the top three with 75%. The supermarket was awarded full marks for the appearance of its stores, helpfulness of staff, short queues and the quality of its fresh produce. However, it fell short on value for money.
Co-op was at the bottom of the ranking for the second year in a row with a 61% customer score. Customers told Which? it was "expensive", "always crowded" and had "long queues at checkout".
The "big four" supermarkets were all in the bottom half of the rankings for their in-store offering. Tesco (TSCO.L) scored 70%, Sainsbury’s (SBRY.L) was given 68%, and Asda and Morrisons both received 67%.
Iceland took the top spot for online offerings, receiving a customer score of 76% and getting full marks for availability of delivery slots and how easy its website or app was to use.
However, the frozen food specialist was at the bottom of Which?’s sustainability ranking. M&S had also scored poorly in Which?’s supermarket sustainability ranking which was published last month.
Tesco and Ocado (OCDO.L) also impressed online shoppers, both scoring 74%.
Online-only Ocado was the only supermarket to receive the top score for its product range with customers praising its "fantastic range of more unusual items — vegan food, world food, healthy options, etc — as well as all the basics".
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Harry Rose, Which? magazine editor, said: “Shoppers have chosen M&S as their favourite supermarket for a great in-store shopping experience and quality products.
“But with the cost of living continuing to rise, many people are looking for quality at the cheapest possible price, and this is reflected by a strong showing in our research for some of the least expensive supermarkets.”
It comes as consumer confidence in the UK fell to a 13-month low in February, according to GfK’s consumer confidence barometer as the country faces a cost of living squeeze and soaring inflation.
The UK inflation rate rose by 5.5% in the 12 months to January, up from 5.4% in December 2021, reaching a near 30-year high while Russia's invasion of Ukraine is also likely to increase consumer prices.