Sainsbury’s Thornhill, Cardiff

Source: KateStuartPhotography

Sainsbury’s stood out with a good layout and well-stocked shelves

This week’s winner was Sainsbury’s Thornhill, Cardiff, which scored 82 points thanks to strong service and store standards.

Shop floor staff were easy to find, very friendly, and happy to help find an item. Checkout staff were also friendly and handled products with care, as well as being happy to answer questions. Our shopper noted they slowed the speed of scanning to match her packing speed.

The store’s layout was another plus-point. Products were easy to find, and shelves were generally well stocked – reflected in a relatively high availability score, lowered only by two out-of-stock items.

Second-placed Morrisons Sheffield excelled in store standards to earn a score of 79 points. The large and modern store had a bright and airy feel and was spotlessly clean throughout.

The main entrance was spacious and welcoming with a variety of different products, ranging from bakery to beer.

Shelves, cabinets, fridges, freezers, floors and windows were all “sparkling clean”.

However, staff were a little hard to find as most were on the counters or tills. They were of mixed helpfulness, and not all staff members took our shopper to the relevant shelf.

There were plenty of tills open at the checkout and our shopper did not have to wait. The assistant was pleasant and efficient but “a bit too fast”.

Overall, our shopper had “a great shopping experience” and said she would definitely stop by again in the future.

Next up was Tesco Formby in Liverpool, which scored 72 points thanks to excellent service and availability.

Staff were smart in appearance and proactive in their duties, proving very helpful in assisting with queries.

There was only one item out of stock – the blueberries – and other pack sizes were available as alternatives.

Store standards were a little wanting, however. While the store was well laid out, a few items were not available and trolleys were blocking aisles.

Fourth-placed Waitrose Godalming scored 64 points and was clearly still plagued by the availability issues of last week. A total of nine items were out of stock and two items were not stocked.

Availability was particularly bad in the fruit and veg section, our shopper noted, but replenishing was taking place.

Staff members seemed to be only focused on filling shelves, which came to the detriment of shoppers attempting to browse the aisles.

However, staff were helpful in advising on products that were out of stock, and went to check the warehouse.

There were attractive food counters available and our shopper noticed a customer trying some cheese before choosing what to buy, which was “great service”.

Last-placed Asda Perry Barr scored very poorly across the board with just 31 points.

Our shopper’s woes began with a lack of trolleys available. He had to go around the car park searching for a trolley before he could start the shop.

Once he entered the store, things were no better. The entrance was crowded, and the layout was not logical. There was a milk spillage and an alarm from the bakery sounding for five minutes.

Checkout service was extremely poor. Our shopper had to queue for over 10 minutes as few tills were open, and the assistant didn’t say a word.

The store scored zero points on availability, with three out-of-stock items and five lines not stocked.