Target garners top spot as valuable brand

NEW YORK — Target once again has taken the top spot as the retailer with the strongest consumer brand equity, according to the latest Harris poll.

This marked the second consecutive year Target has led the way in the "value retail" category, with an increasing gap noted between the company and runner-up Walmart, according to the "2011 Harris Poll EquiTrend" study. Target led the way with a ranking of 74.1, while Walmart had a ranking of 70.8. The industry average in the value retail category was 67.3.

Despite the fact that Target holds the No. 2 retailer spot in the United States, the study determined results by equity, consumer connection, commitment, brand behavior, brand advocacy and trust. The keystone to the program is equity, which provides an understanding of a brand's overall strength and is determined by a calculation of familiarity, quality and purchase consideration.

“In difficult economic times, consumers look for value.” said Jeni Lee Chapman, EVP brand and communications consulting at Harris Interactive. “Target is seen as a retailer with strong brand equity especially when compared to its competition. As consumers consolidate where they choose to spend their paychecks, those retailers with the highest brand equity are going to obtain greater share of that spending.”

This year’s "Harris Poll EquiTrend" study was conducted online among 25,099 U.S. consumers ages 15 years and older between Jan. 11 and 27. A total of 1,273 brands were rated in 53 separate categories.