Apple Mac tops American Customer Satisfaction Index customer satisfaction for 8th consecutive year

Customer satisfaction across three durable goods industries stalls in 2011, with the majority of companies staying almost exactly where they were in 2010, according to a report released today by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI). The report covers customer satisfaction with personal computers, major appliances, and electronics (televisions and BD/DVD players).

Apple Sets a High Bar
One year after climbing 4% to a record-high score of 78 on ACSI’s 0 to 100-point scale, customer satisfaction with personal computers flattens out. The industry itself is in a state of rapid change, with technology advances accelerating amid shifts in consumer preference. As the demand for traditional desktop PCs weakens, the tablet computer market is skyrocketing—led by Apple’s iPad.

Apple’s record of customer satisfaction preeminence in the personal computer industry continues unabated in 2011, as the company adds another point to its already exceptional score. At 87 (+1%), Apple outdistances its nearest competitor by 9 points.

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“In the eight years that Apple has led the PC industry in customer satisfaction, its stock price has increased by 2,300%,” remarks Claes Fornell, founder of the ACSI and author of The Satisfied Customer: Winners and Losers in the Battle for Buyer Preference, in the press release. “Apple’s winning combination of innovation and product diversification—including spinning off technologies into entirely new directions—has kept the company consistently at the leading edge.”

Among Windows-based PC makers, not much has changed over the past year. The two Hewlett-Packard brands—Compaq and HP—see only incremental gains (+1%) in 2011. At 78, HP outperforms last-place Compaq at 75, and customer satisfaction for both brands is higher now than at any time since the HP-Compaq merger in 2002. But HP’s market share is increasingly threatened by tablet computers, and the company may soon abandon the PC market altogether. Dell, Acer and the aggregate of all other brands (such as Toshiba, Lenovo and Sony) are sandwiched in between the two HP product lines, with no progress this year as evidenced by unchanged ACSI scores of 77.

American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) - Personal Computers - 2011
ACSI releases industry results monthly and updates the national index quarterly. Baseline measurements are from the summer of 1994.

MacDailyNews Take: Secretariat at The Belmont followed at a great distance by a bunch of mediocre nags choking on the dust of greatness.

The American Customer Satisfaction Index is a national economic indicator of customer evaluations of the quality of products and services available to household consumers in the United States. Data from interviews with approximately 70,000 customers annually are used as inputs into an econometric model to measure satisfaction with more than 225 companies in 47 industries and 10 economic sectors, along with over 200 services, programs, and websites of approximately 130 federal government agencies. Results are released on a monthly basis with all measures reported using a 0 to 100 scale. ACSI data have proven to be strongly related to a number of essential indicators of micro and macroeconomic performance. For example, firms with higher levels of customer satisfaction tend to have higher earnings and stock returns relative to competitors. Stock portfolios based on companies that show strong performance in ACSI deliver excess returns in up markets as well as down markets. And, at the macro level, customer satisfaction has been shown to be predictive of both consumer spending and gross domestic product growth.

The Index was founded at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business and is produced by ACSI LLC.

More info here.

Source: ASCI LLC

MacDailyNews Take: Most Windows PC sufferers don’t know any better. Their version of satisfaction is something no Mac user would tolerate for a second.

Related articles:
American Customer Satisfaction Index: Apple Mac dominates for seventh straight year – September 21, 2010
ACSI: Apple Mac again leads Windows PCs by wide margin in consumer satisfaction – August 18, 2009
Study: Apple beats Dell and HP in customer satisfaction – June 26, 2009
J.D. Power: Apple iPhone ranks highest in smartphone customer satisfaction – April 30, 2009
Survey: Apple Mac users report highest level of satisfaction by far – February 19, 2009
ChangeWave: Apple Mac holds its corporate share; clearly leads in corp customer satisfaction – December 31, 2008
ChangeWave: Apple iPhone’s ‘very satisfied’ rating more than double that of RIM’s BlackBerry Storm – December 22, 2008
J.D. Power: Apple iPhone ranks highest in business wireless smartphone customer satisfaction – November 06, 2008
ACSI: Customer satisfaction rockets for Apple’s Mac; rest of Windows PC industry drops again – August 19, 2008
ChangeWave: Mac OS X Leopard satisfaction far outpaces Vista; Apple Mac strong despite PC slowdown – March 26, 2008
ChangeWave: Apple iPhone maintains big lead in customer satisfaction; top choice among likely buyers – February 07, 2008
ChangeWave survey shows big Apple Mac sales, very high Mac OS X Leopard, very low Vista satisfaction – January 17, 2008
ChangeWave: Apple’s iPhone races to huge lead in customer satisfaction – October 18, 2007
Apple Mac desktops, notebooks top PC Magazine’s Annual Reader Satisfaction survey – again – September 18, 2007
Survey: Apple iPhone nabs unprecedented 92% satisfaction rating (plus likes and dislikes) – August 16, 2007
Study: Apple iPhone owners ‘off the charts’ satisfied with device – July 13, 2007
Microsoft’s customer satisfaction drops following Windows Vista launch – May 17, 2007
Apple’s secret ingredient? A large group of very satisfied customers – April 10, 2007
Apple Mac desktops, notebooks top PC Magazine’s Annual Reader Satisfaction survey – again – August 22, 2006
Apple Computer tops PC satisfaction study – August 15, 2006
Apple Mac desktops, portables top PC Magazine’s 2005 Reader Satisfaction survey – August 24, 2005
Apple continues to lead in customer satisfaction, Dell loses more ground – August 16, 2005
Apple Macintosh leads in personal computer customer satisfaction – August 24, 2004
Apple Macs top PC Magazine’s ‘17th Annual Reader Satisfaction Survey’ – August 10, 2004


  1. MDN sez: “Most Windows PC sufferers don’t know any better.”

    A tiny tale about this phenomenon:

    Recently I had a run in with a bad landlord who hired a careless and incompetent handyman to put a cover roof on one of his houses. Amidst the joy and fun, I had a very candid chat with the handyman himself, who was none too pleased at my seeing through his mask of aggressive BS.

    A couple days later, handyman is chattering with the cohorts he had hired to help him figure out how to put on a roof. I enjoyed listening to them through my window. They are ranting about me of course, calling me “Mr. Microsoft”, which of course got me roaring with laughter. :LOL:

    One of the things they complained about me was that I had pointed out handyman’s previous shoddy work and how unfair I was being to handyman by expecting the same shoddiness in his current project.

    In response, handyman stated his ultimate philosophy of life to his crew: “Progress, not perfection!,” as if to prove his competence.

    And yet, what he actually did was verify my low expectations. Handyman ironically proved himself to be “Mr. Microsoft” in his philosophy as it is exactly that of every failing organization in history.

    If you never aim for perfection, you get what you deserve. 😥

    He and his ilk deserve Microsoft. They DON’T deserve Apple. And they’ll never comprehend why. They apparently can’t help it. But a good teacher is ever hopeful. 😀

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