Top Retailers in 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend® Study: Walgreens is Drug Store Brand of the Year; Target stores is top-ranked for second straight year
Kohl's and Nordstrom are highest ranked retailers in their categories; Speedway Convenience Stores and Costco Gasoline also top their lists
NEW YORK, May 14, 2012 -While a fickle economy has forced many retailers into challenging periods of deep discounting, some top retail brands have managed to stay above the fray, partly due to their powerful brand equity. The 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend (EQ) study surveyed Americans about brands across several retail segments, revealing which brands prompted them to open their hearts-and consequently-their pocketbooks.
Traditional Drug Stores Trump Value Retail Pharmacies
Although general merchandisers such as Walmart, Target, Costco, and Kmart have rolled out value pharmacy departments, American consumers indicate they are more likely to purchase from more traditional drug stores like Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid, according to the 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend study. In fact, Walgreens takes the top spot as EquiTrend's first-ever Drugstore Brand of the Year, while CVS and Rite Aid came in second and third, respectively, in this new category for 2012. Top scores for Familiarity and Purchase Consideration boosted Walgreens to the top.
Target Hits the Mark as Value Retailer
In the Value Retailer category, Target is once again the Value Retail Brand of the Year, surpassing Walmart. While this is just the second year of this award category, in 2007 Target supplanted Walmart in overall Retailer rankings, and has maintained its lead ever since. Top scores for all three elements of brand equity -Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Intention - drove this strong performance.
Kohl's Connects with Consumers
While all brands in the Department Store category have dropped in 2012, Kohl's continues to rank above JCPenney to become the Harris Poll EquiTrend Department Store Brand of the Year in this year's Harris Poll EquiTrend study. Kohl's edged out JCPenney in 2009 and has been able to maintain its lead in the rankings ever since. Kohl's shows the highest overall brand equity score, carried by a strong performance in Purchase Consideration. Earlier this year, Kohl's also was the top mid-tier department store brand in the Harris Poll Customer Relationship Series, which measures customer experience with brands.
"The fact that Kohl's ranked first in both surveys indicates that its brand promise is being successfully fulfilled through the actual shopping experience," says Mike Chadsey, a senior consultant in the Customer Solutions Group at Harris Interactive. "This is probably why we see such strong scores for Kohl's in Connection and Momentum."
Nordstrom is Top High-End Department Store
While Nordstrom has been part of EquiTrend since 2010, this year it takes its place at the head of a new category: Luxury Department Store Brand. Top levels of Familiarity and Purchase Consideration drove Nordstrom to the top as the 2012 Luxury Department Store Brand of the Year. Lord & Taylor and Bloomingdale's, included in the study for the first time, placed second and third respectively.
Speedway is the Convenience-Store-of-Choice
As Americans speed through their busy days, many shop at convenience stores, with some that are stand-alone stores and others which are part of retail gas stations. In the inaugural year for the Convenience Store Brand of the Year, Speedway takes the top spot, followed by Arco am/pm and 7-Eleven. While consumers are most familiar with 7-Eleven, Speedway's top scores for Quality and Purchase Consideration led to its highest ranking in this category.
Costco Debuts as Gasoline Retail Brand of the Year
With the rising price of fuel, where Americans go to gas up is more important than ever. This year marks the first time Harris has included Costco in its EquiTrend retail gas category. The brand takes the top spot, debuting as the Gasoline Retail Brand of the Year. Costco supplants Speedway, which was the top-ranked brand for the last three years. Other brands scoring above average in brand equity include Hess, Shell, Sam's Club, Sunoco, Speedway, Arco, ExxonMobil, and Chevron. While Shell enjoys the highest Familiarity in the category, Costco Gasoline boasts the highest Quality and Purchase Consideration among its competitive set.
Woot for Daily Deals!
With the growing list of daily deal web sites, the 2012 Harris Poll EquiTrend study adds the category Daily Deal Brand of the Year, in order to monitor how these brands evolve over time. Groupon was added to EquiTrend as a retailer in 2011 and enjoys the highest Familiarity. But the top spot in the new category goes to Woot.com.
Woot.com's brand equity is driven by a strong emotional connection with consumers, an important element of differentiation in a category that has suddenly become quite crowed.
About Harris Poll EquiTrend
Harris Poll EquiTrend® is a leading Brand Equity tracking study conducted by Harris Interactive that measures and compares brand health for more than 1,500 brands. The study was conducted online from January 31 through February 20, 2012 and analyzes the responses of over 38,500 consumers on key measures of brand health - including how well the public knows a brand, how positively they think of the brand and their consideration to do business with or donate to a brand. Each brand is rated 1,000 times among respondents who are familiar with the brand. Harris Interactive has conducted its EquiTrend study regularly since 1989, and can offer yearly trended data from 2005. The Equity Score, a key take-away from EquiTrend, has been validated against financial performance by Georgetown University.
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For a complete listing of all the brands covered in the study, contact Corporate Communications at 212-539-9600 or email@example.com.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading custom and multi-client market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 215 countries and territories through our North American and European offices and a network of global partners, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients - stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.