Retail Customer Service Rankings: L.L. Bean #1 Again

January 14, 2010

Maintaining its coveted spot at the top of the list for the third year running, L.L. Bean has once again landed the #1 position as the retailer with the best customer service in 2009, according to the fifth annual National Retail Federation (NRF) Foundation/American Express Customers’ Choice survey, conducted by BIGresearch.?

The survey found that US customers believe L.L.Bean delivers the best customer service across all retail formats.? The Maine-based retailer also received top honors? for 2007 and for for 2008.

Top 10 Retailers

There was little change in the top five this year as retailers in positions #2, #3 and #4 each held on to the same spots they secured last year, NRF said. (#2), (#3) and (#4) made big impressions on shoppers again this year, while QVC jumped three spots this year to round out the top five.


Other multichannel and specialty retailers in the top 10 include Coldwater Creek (#6), Lands’ End (#8) and JCPenney (#9). HSN (#7) climbed nine spots to secure a top-10 position, and Nordstrom and Kohl’s tied for #10. Kohl’s jumped up the list from #18 in 2008.

Overall, 42 retailers made the list. “With competition as its peak in 2009, retailers this past year made sure to focus on excellent customer service all year long,” said NRF Foundation VP Kathy Mance. “Any company who secured a spot on the list this year should congratulate themselves and their employees for a job well done.”

About the survey: The NRF Foundation/American Express 2009 Customer Service survey was designed to gauge consumer attitudes toward retailers’ customer service and to provide a listing of the top customer service retailers. The survey, which polled 8,600 consumers, was conducted by BIGresearch in September 2009. In order to develop a fair comparison, regardless of a retailer’s size or geographic coverage, the consumer survey responses were compared to each retailer’s 2008 revenues to develop the overall rankings. The survey data and the process for selecting the winners were reviewed by Professor Martin P. Block, Ph.D., of Northwestern University. A download of the full list is available here (pdf).

Results were announced at this week’s Annual Retail Industry Luncheon during the National Retail Federation’s 99th Annual Convention and EXPO in New York City. The top 10 retailers in the survey were honored at the luncheon.


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