Supermarket giant Asda is topping the tables of customer moans, according to an online complaint service.
The Leeds retailer received 5,478 complaints through Resolver, the free online complaint-resolution tool, in the last year. The figure was more than four times higher than the next most moaned about supermarket.
Customer grumbles were most likely to be about product issues and returns, conduct of staff and home delivery problems.
The research also showed that Asda is the only major supermarket chain not responding to issues raised through Resolver - but Asda said that while it welcomed contact from customers, its preference is to speak to them directly.
The retailer said there was a number of reasons behind the decision, including a limited amount of detail in third-party complaints and the issues of sharing personal customer home delivery information. Asda also said it replied to every complaint raised through Resolver with its contact details so customers could get in touch directly.
James Walker, CEO and founder of Resolver, said: “We’re not trying to pick on Asda unfairly, but we want to show that there is an issue here. The figure represents thousands of customers whose issues have not been dealt with effectively – and that’s just the disgruntled customers who have gone via Resolver. We’ve reached out to Asda on several occasions to explain that issues raised via the Resolver system come direct from the user, but they continue to tell customers they will not interact with a third party – which we are not.
“Resolver does not get involved with individual complaints – we merely provide the tools for customers to raise and manage their own issues. But we have built up such a depth of unanswered complaints that we feel there is an opportunity to use the sheer weight of complaints to get them heard and responded to – all we’re asking is that Asda talks to the customers who are directly talking to them.
“This is about resolution, not mud-slinging or confrontation.”
An Asda spokesman said: “Our customers are at the heart of everything we do, so when they’re not 100 per cent happy with their experience we want to talk to them directly.
“While we are aware of several complaint management services, we strongly believe the best way of resolving a customer issue is through one of our dedicated channels where our highly experienced customer services teams are ready and waiting to help. We monitor our performance on an ongoing basis and are committed to continuing to offer great customer service – on the phone, online, in writing and through our new Web Chat system.”
HOW DO OTHER CHAINS SHAPE UP?
The second most complained about supermarket was Morrisons, with 1,348 complaints raised through the resolution tool.
The main grumbles were product issues and returns, conduct of staff and complaint handling.
The chain does, however, respond directly and effectively to Resolver-raised complaints.
Tesco was the subject of 1,073 complaints while Sainsbury’s received just 241 - both retailers had a reasonable response rate to Resolver complaints.