DISTRIBUTORS/CO-OPS

Venhuizen welcomes J.D. Power results

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The J.D. Power 2014 U.S. Home Improvement Retailer Store Satisfaction Study gave high marks to Oak Brook, Ill.-based Ace Hardware Corp.

J.D. Power’s ranking have Ace Hardware “Highest in Customer Satisfaction with Home Improvement Retail Stores” for the eighth year in a row. Ace has captured this ranking ever since the organization began this study eight years ago. 

“We are honored and humbled to receive this recognition from our valued customers for the eighth year in a row,” said John Venhuizen, President and CEO, Ace Hardware Corporation. “I know the Ace team views these awards not with arrogance, but with a humbled determination to even better serve their communities.” 

The J.D. Power study is based on responses from more than 2,900 consumers who purchased home improvement products or services in the previous 12 months. Ace Hardware ranked highest among major retailers with an overall satisfaction index score of 791 on a 1,000-point scale. According to consumers, Ace performs particularly well in the staff and service category. 

The score is based on performance in five areas: merchandise, price, sales and promotions, staff and service, and store facility.

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True Value recognizes Cedar Lake Hardware

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Jeff and Al Bunge of Cedar Lake True Value Hardware were recognized by the Chicago-based True Value Company as one 13 “Best Hardware Store in Town” honorees.

According to the co-op, Jeff got his own department in the family owned store at the age of 11, working under his father and uncle. The store was converted to the Destination True Value format in June 2012.

Th Best Hardware Store in Town program has been recognizing True Value retailers since 2007. “These are talented business people who work incredibly hard to bring their communities the best service and shopping experiences possible,” said John Hartmann, president and CEO of True Value.

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Price rules, so does Ace, in J.D. Power survey

BY HBSDEALER Staff

While staff and service remains the most influential factor in satisfaction once customers are at a home improvement retail store, price is what drives customers to a retailer in the first place, underscoring the importance of competitive differentiation efforts via better price and value perception, according to the J.D. Power 2014 Home Improvement Retailer Satisfaction Study released today.

The survey results also showed Ace Hardware at the top of the 2014 Home Improvement Retailer Satisfaction Study, followed by Menards and Lowe’s.

“For local home improvement retailers to remain competitive with big box retailers, they need to differentiate themselves through promotions, sales and overall pricing to help get customers in the door and then reinforce their decision to visit that store by providing an exceptional staff and service experience once they are there,” said Christina Cooley, director of home improvement industries at J.D. Power. “Conveying price and the value-add story is best accomplished by leveraging communications channels that customers prefer to use. This critical combination of being price competitive and providing superior service may help increase share of wallet and new customer growth.” 

The study, now in its eighth year, measures customer satisfaction with home improvement retail stores based on performance in five factors (in alphabetical order): merchandise (including availability, selection of brands available, usefulness of product information displays, and variety of merchandise offered); price; sales and promotions; staff and service (including availability, courtesy, ease of checkout, ease of returning merchandise and knowledge); and store facility (including availability of parking, cleanliness of store, convenience of store location, ease of finding merchandise, and store layout and design).

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