Costco dethrones Amazon as internet retail leader, report says

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Forget Walmart and Target, Costco is Amazon’s newest—and biggest—rival, as the wholesale retailer just dethroned the e-commerce giant in customer satisfaction, according to a new report.

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The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) Retail and Consumer Shipping Report found that in the eyes of customers, Costco is the new leader of the internet retail kingdom, scoring an 83 percent on the ACSI scale, while Amazon retreats 4 percent to 82 percent.

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Amazon had held the top spot since 2010.

Each year, ACSI surveys customer satisfaction across all six retail categories including department and discount stores, health and personal care stores, specialty retail stores, supermarkets, internet retail, and gas stations—as well as consumer shipping.

And, the report found that overall customer satisfaction is down “across the board.”

Also, while most customers still prefer online shopping to other types of retail, even e-commerce is showing signs of strain, dropping 2.4 percent last year.

“There is a slump in customer satisfaction in every category of the retail sector,” David VanAmburg, managing director at the ACSI said in a press release.

“Internet retail versus brick-and-mortar retail, department stores versus specialty stores, it’s all down. Considering the importance of retail to overall consumer spending, this decline is a big deal.”

Other e-commerce outlets such as eBay, Overstock and Newegg all dropped a percent point or more this year.

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However, along with Costco, other retailers are making headway in the internet retail category, according to customers. Etsy, Kohl’s, Nordstrom and Nike all debuted on the list this year at 81 percent. While Target, Macy’s, Wayfair, Apple and the HP Store came in at the industry average of 80 percent.

Walmart and Sears, however, anchored the bottom of the category at 74 and 73 percent, respectively.