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Appliance stores

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What's behind our appliance store Ratings?

The Consumer Reports National Research Center comprises highly trained social scientists, including 9 Ph.D.s, using state-of-the-art techniques to survey more than 1 million consumers each year about products, services, health care and consumer issues.
We look for:
  • Reader score
    A score of 100 means all respondents were completely satisfied; 80 would mean very satisfied, on average; 60, fairly well satisfied; 40, somewhat dissatisfied.
  • Price paid
    Price of product purchased
  • Selection
    Selection of available brands or models
  • Product quality
    Quality of product purchased
  • Service
    Quality of service from sales help
  • Checkout ease
    Rating of ease of checkout
  • Shipping
    Shipping options, cost, handling and delays for shipping and home delivery
  • Installation
    Rating of retailer's installation service
  • Haul-away
    Haul away service for old appliance



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Appliance shoppers were a fairly satisfied group compared with shoppers of other items, such as mattresses. Still, no retailer earned perfect marks across the board, and respondents to our survey who bought small appliances were fairly critical about selection and service. But some strategies they tried made shopping more successful.

Appliance store buying guide

Appliance store buying guide

Retailers have been upping their game, pursuing you wherever you are. In an economy that remains wobbly, opening new stores is harder than seeking out customers where they live: online. Retailers also want to get onto your smart phones and iPads with free "lifestyle" apps--and vie for a bigger share of your available cash.

While retailers say "show me the money," for shoppers it's "show me the deals." According to our exclusive appliance-buying survey of tens of thousands of subscribers, price matters, and good customer service and quality are sometimes elusive goals.

Online retailers are trying to make a play on traditional retailers. Amazon made a splash by offering 5 percent discounts to users of its Price Check app, which lets you scan the bar code of a product in a store or snap a photo to learn Amazon's price.

When survey respondent Marc Hamilton made his first online major-appliance purchase, Amazon was the seller--but Abt Electronics, which maintains a webstore on Amazon's site, was the partner and handled delivery from its Chicago-area location. "I hadn't heard of Abt, but I did some online research and liked what I saw," says Hamilton, who lives in the St. Louis area. "I had no complaints whatsoever with either company."

For our survey, subscribers told us about their overall satisfaction based on experiences buying almost 30,000 appliances.

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See also:
See buying guide down arrow
See buying guide down arrow
See buying guide down arrow
See buying guide down arrow
See buying guide down arrow
See buying guide down arrow