WH Smith is Most Hated Store On High-Street

In Customer Engagement, Customer Experience, Featured on App, Marketing and Sales by Vaughn Highfield

WH Smith is Most Hated Store On High-Street (Image: Gene Hunt on Flickr)

In a new survey from consumer helpers Which? shows that newsagents and stationery store WH Smith is the most disliked high-street store in the UK.

Comprised of over 11,000 consumers opinions, WH Smith came out on the bottom with only 51 per cent of respondents saying they had a positive experience in the store.

Other brands that floated around the bottom were TK Maxx with 56 per cent and Millets with 57 per cent.

Conversely, the top-rated store was (unsurprisingly) Apple.

Consumers said that they loved the "unique look and feel" of its stores, along with the "great customer service" received. All 37 stores were described as having "great atmosphere and products" alongside "excellent" and "knowledgeable" staff.

All very positive things for Apple and its in-store ethos with an 85 per cent customer satisfaction rate.

It wasn't alone up top though as fancy natural soap retailer Lush bagged an mark of 82 per cent and the Disney Store sat pretty with 80 per cent. Hi-fi and TV specialist chain Richer Sounds also managed to grab 80 per cent and women's clothing store Bon Marché scooped 79 per cent.

The most interesting point of the survey wasn't the dissatisfaction with WH Smith. Instead it came from the high percentage (88 per cent) of consumers who were unhappy about many retail chains closing over the last year.

Despite 52 per cent admitting that they buy online, consumers still use high-street shops more often than they do websites, shopping centres and retail parks.

As you can imagine, WH Smith have debunked the survey's results saying it isn't reflective of consumer thought. However, it's been one of the lowest-rated shops for the last four years.

Even Mary Portas – who is speaking at this year's Loyalty World in London – described it as a "dump" that she "truly hates" shopping in.

Do you think that WH Smith is really the worst store on the high-street?

Are consumers really visiting high-street stores more than websites, shopping centres and retail parks?

Let us know by leaving a comment below for us.