Customer satisfaction with interior paint continues to increase as manufacturers and paint retailers focus on paint application, which is the most important aspect of the customer experience, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2012 U.S. Interior Paint Satisfaction Study.
The study, now in its sixth year, measures customer satisfaction among those who have purchased and applied interior paint during the past year and examines six key factors of the painting experience: application; product offerings; durability; price; design guides, and warranty/guarantee.
Overall satisfaction with interior paint brands in 2012 has increased to an average of 776 on a 1,000-point scale from 770 in 2011. Satisfaction has also increased in four of the six factors included in the study. The most notable improvements have occurred in the application, durability, and warranty factors.
Benjamin Moore ranks highest in customer satisfaction with interior paint for a second consecutive year with a score of 790 and performs particularly well in three of the six factors: application, offerings, and durability. Following Benjamin Moore in the rankings are Sherman-Williams (788), BEHR Paints (785), and Dunn-Edwards (782), each of which improved by at least 10 points during the past year.
The study finds that satisfaction with the paint application process continues to be important, as 82 percent of customers apply the paint themselves, rather than hiring someone to do it for them. One contributor to the increase in overall satisfaction, and specifically to the application experience, is that more brands are offering paint that includes primer. Slightly more than one-fifth (21%) of customers surveyed say they purchased an interior paint that included primer mixed in with the final color, an increase of 4 percentage points from 2011 and 9 percentage points from 2010. Satisfaction is higher among customers who purchased and applied an interior paint that includes primer.
The study also finds an additional contributor to increased satisfaction is customers' experience with paint retailers. More than one-half of customers who purchased paint received guidance on their painting project from the retailer and more than one-third received color selection advice. Interestingly, satisfaction is higher among customers who purchased their paint directly from a manufacturer's specialty store (e.g., Sherwin-Williams, Dunn-Edwards) than among those customers who purchased from a home improvement retailer.
"Customers purchase, on average, four gallons of paint per project at about $30 per gallon. The combination of a helpful and knowledgeable retailer and high-quality, easy-to-apply paint is essential to delighting customers," said Christina Cooley, senior manager of the home improvement industries practice at J.D. Power and Associates, in a press release. "A positive experience will result in customers recommending and reusing the highest-performing brands for their next painting project."
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