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Costco, BJ's, or Sam's: Which One Do Americans Love the Most?

The Motley Fool logo The Motley Fool 3/26/2023 Christy Bieber
Warehouse club store shopper browsing aisle with shopping cart © Getty Images Warehouse club store shopper browsing aisle with shopping cart

Shopping at warehouse stores is a great way to keep more money in your bank account due to the great prices these types of shops offer on many goods and services.

You have many different warehouse stores to choose from when you're headed out to do your shopping -- and the good news is, each of the three big names has good customer satisfaction rankings.

But, if you're wondering which is viewed most favorably, some recent data can provide the answer.

This is America's most beloved big-box store

According to a recent American Customer Satisfaction survey that asked about consumers' happiness with different supermarkets, Costco was the favorite big-box store. In 2023, Costco had a customer satisfaction score of 82, up from 81 in 2022.

This was a higher rating than the average, which was 76 in both 2022 and 2023. Only Trader Joe's had a higher customer satisfaction score than Costco, with a score of 84 this year (down from 85 in 2022). Publix tied Costco by earning a score of 82 in 2023, although it came in lower at 80 in 2021.

By contrast, both BJ's and Sam's Club both received lower marks. BJ's had a score of 78 in 2022 and 79 in 2023, while Sam's Club had a customer satisfaction rating of 79 during both years.

Should you shop at Costco?

There are plenty of very good reasons why consumers love Costco and can't wait to break out their credit cards to pick up items at the warehouse store.

Costco offers affordable prices and a huge variety of different consumer items, so shopping there is convenient. Many customers also appreciate that the warehouse club regularly offers free samples of delectable treats -- or they enjoy dining on the store's famous $1.50 hot dog and soda combo.

Costco's house brand, Kirkland Signature, is also a top reason why so many people like to visit the store. Kirkland products range from household items to food to liquor and beyond. Many Kirkland offerings are as good or better than name-brand alternatives, but are available at a much lower price point.

But, while there are definitely benefits to Costco shopping, that doesn't necessarily mean it's the right store for everyone. If you've never been to Costco and want to try it out, then it may be worth visiting to see what the store has to offer.

You'll have to consider whether paying the store's membership fee of $60 to $120 is worth it for you, though. And that will depend on how close the nearest Costco location is, whether the warehouse club carries the brands and types of products you're interested in, and whether Costco actually has better prices on the things you buy regularly.

Don't assume that Costco will always be cheaper or will always be your best bet just because so many of your peers love it. Take the time to compare prices locally and to see if you enjoy the shopping experience before you commit to a warehouse club membership.


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We're firm believers in the Golden Rule, which is why editorial opinions are ours alone and have not been previously reviewed, approved, or endorsed by included advertisers. The Ascent does not cover all offers on the market. Editorial content from The Ascent is separate from The Motley Fool editorial content and is created by a different analyst team.Christy Bieber has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Costco Wholesale. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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