Overall Customer Satisfaction with Kitchen Cabinet Brands Improves Considerably from 2010

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KraftMaid Ranks Highest in Customer Satisfaction among Cabinet Brands

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.: 18 May 2011 -- Overall customer satisfaction with cabinet brands has increased notably from 2010, primarily due to improved satisfaction with cabinet design, performance and value, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 U.S. Kitchen Cabinet Satisfaction StudySM released today.

The study measures customer satisfaction with kitchen cabinets by measuring five factors: design features (such as the variety of cabinet colors/finishes and range of sizes and shapes available); operational performance (including smoothness of drawer slides and sturdiness of cabinet joinery); ordering and delivery (including ease of ordering, condition of products at delivery and timeliness); price; and warranty.

Overall satisfaction with kitchen cabinet brands has increased from an average of 742 on a 1,000-point scale in 2010 to 754 in 2011. Satisfaction with the design features, price and operational performance factors have improved in 2011, compared with 2010. Kitchen cabinet customers are particularly satisfied with the ordering and delivery factor in 2011, which is the most influential factor contributing to overall satisfaction.

KraftMaid ranks highest in customer satisfaction among cabinet manufacturers with a score of 771 and performs particularly well in three of the five factors: design features, operational performance and ordering and delivery.  Following KraftMaid in the rankings are Thomasville (767) and Merrillat (765). Thomasville performs particularly well in the warranty factor.

"While the majority of cabinet manufacturers have improved in 2011, KraftMaid's considerable improvement from 2010 has helped differentiate it from the other high-performing brands in this highly competitive environment," said Christina Cooley, senior manager of the real estate and construction industries practice at J.D. Power and Associates.

The study finds that a vast majority of cabinet purchasers--81 percent--personally made the decision of which brand to buy, rather than having an installer, contractor, retailer or architect decide. A sizable proportion of these customers relied on either their past experience with a brand or in-store product displays while shopping for kitchen cabinets. Cabinet purchasers cite price, quality and cabinet styling and feel as the primary reasons for selecting a particular brand.

In 2011, 59 percent of cabinet purchasers say they bought stock-sized units, rather than semi- or fully custom cabinets. In comparison, 46 percent of cabinet purchasers in 2010 said the same. According to Cooley, this shift suggests budgetary constraints are becoming increasingly influential in the cabinet selection process.  The study finds that 45 percent of purchasers are replacing their cabinets as part of a full kitchen remodel and are spending approximately $4,500, on average, for cabinets.

"Since customers are investing significantly in their kitchen remodeling projects and specifically in their cabinets, it is important that they balance price, quality, and design when making their brand selection to ensure that their specific needs are met for the long term," said Cooley. "Customers should examine several cabinet brands, which may involve shopping at more than one retailer. They should also keep in mind that the service they receive during the ordering and delivery process is key to overall satisfaction, so selecting a cabinet retailer carefully is also important."

The 2011 U.S. Kitchen Cabinet Satisfaction Study measures customer satisfaction based on responses from more than 1,200 consumers who purchased kitchen cabinets within the previous 12 months.  The study was fielded in March and April 2011.

About J.D. Power and Associates
Headquartered in Westlake Village, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services company providing forecasting, performance improvement, social media and customer satisfaction insights and solutions.  The company's quality and satisfaction measurements are based on responses from millions of consumers annually. For more information on car reviews and ratings, car insurance, health insurance, cell phone ratings, and more, please visit JDPower.com. J.D. Power and Associates is a business unit of The McGraw-Hill Companies.

About The McGraw-Hill Companies
Founded in 1888, The McGraw-Hill Companies is a leading global financial information and education company that helps professionals and students succeed in the Knowledge Economy.  Leading brands include Standard & Poor's, McGraw-Hill Education, Platts energy information services and J.D. Power and Associates.  The Corporation has approximately 21,000 employees with more than 280 offices in 40 countries.  Sales in 2010 were $6.2 billion.  Additional information is available at http://www.mcgraw-hill.com.

No advertising or other promotional use can be made of the information in this release without the express prior written consent of J.D. Power and Associates. /corporate

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