Long Wait Times Erode Customer Satisfaction, Loyalty: Survey
The cut-off period for most retail categories is four minutes, according to a new report from M/A/R/C Research.
June 30, 2008
It's no secret that long wait times are a simmering shopper frustration, but how long is too long? At grocery stores, more than four minutes can jeopardize a customer’s loyalty, said a research firm that released new shopper data last week.
A study conducted in early 2007 by M/A/R/C Research found that 10 percent of shoppers were exasperated enough to leave a checkout line if the wait was lengthy, and the marketing research firm decided to run an online survey of almost 13,000 consumers this year to discover the importance checkout times had on their most recent shopping trips, and whether attitudes had changed since the earlier study. The results were consistent with last year's findings, said the research firm.
As in 2007, the new study showed that shoppers' satisfaction remains high when in line four minutes or less in all store categories. The only exception is for club stores, where an average wait time slightly over four minutes was deemed still acceptable by those surveyed. After four minutes, the satisfaction levels drop considerably across the other seven categories: grocery, consumer electronics, department, drug, home improvement, mass merchandisers, and office supply stores.