Congratulations to Asda and Morrisons for scooping the top accolades in our annual review of The Grocer 33 weekly shopping survey. You will notice from our reports that we are not just recognising which retailer is best for price this year, but also which ones are best for availability and service as well. That Asda won two of these categories, and took Morrisons right to the wire in a third, speaks volumes about why the Wal-Mart subsidiary is performing so well in this country at the moment.
Sure, The Grocer 33 provides only a snapshot of what is happening in the market. But the fact it is a truly independent survey, and one that takes place on a weekly basis, makes it an invaluable tool for retailers who are competing on many fronts ­ of which price, availability and service are among the most important.
Of those three, it is instore availability that is still causing headaches for the multiples. It is arguably the one remaining area where they continue to disappoint shoppers. We see that all too often in our survey ­ with the low point coming one week last November when we failed to report a single full basket. What good are fantastic stores and great prices if shoppers cannot put in their baskets the products they actually want to buy?
So praise where praise is due ­ well done Morrisons, Asda and Waitrose for their impressive performances on the availability front in The Grocer 33 this year. And, in particular, all hail Morrisons with its 57% strike rate'.
The good news, of course, is that every retailer is now raising its game as they all look to work with suppliers to tackle the problems that can lead to unacceptable levels of instore availability. And we will be exploring this whole issue in some depth next week, when we publish a free Supply Chain supplement. Make sure you don't miss it.
Also next week we will be unveiling a number of changes to The Grocer 33. The focus on price, availability and service is not changing. But our shopping list is undergoing a facelift, and we will announce a number of other changes to ensure our unique shopping survey remains as compelling a read as the day it was launched.