H-E-B is Rated the Top Grocery Retailer in the U.S.

Texas cult favorite grocery chain H-E-B is receiving some mainstream recognition this year as the top grocery retailer in the U.S., according to a leading customer data science firm.

H-E-B bumped Trader Joe’s from the No. 1 spot in consumers’ wallets and hearts — a spot it had held for the past two years that data science firm dunnhumby has published its Retailer Preference Index. The Texas chain’s most loyal customers famously travel long distances — sometimes across state lines — just to shop at H-E-B locations.

The data firm evaluated over 60 grocery retailers operating in the U.S., including Food Lion, Albertsons, Aldi, Safeway, Target and Walmart. Rather than looking at retail growth based on store count and revenue size alone, dunnhumby surveyed 7,500 consumers to better understand how they think and feel about the $700 billion grocery industry.

Price and quality were the two most important factors to customers, according to the study. Top grocer H-E-B didn’t land in the top five grocers ranked by price alone. Aldi was ranked the top grocer for price, followed by Market Basket, WinCo, Lidl and Trader Joe’s.

Along with identifying the most popular grocery brands among consumers, the study found that traditional regional grocers are “experiencing a resurgence in customer preference.” The study points to regional grocery chains’ ability to keep a relevant assortment of foods on shelves as part of that success.

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SOURCE: The Dallas Morning News, Dom DiFurio