COSTA MESA, Calif.: 19 Oct. 2017 — Ease of installation and usage remain key contributors to overall satisfaction with remotely controlled—or smart—thermostats, according to the J.D. Power 2017 Smart Thermostat Satisfaction Report,SM released today.
The primary benefit of smart thermostats is convenience, with 70% of customers indicating they adjust their thermostat remotely, followed by automated temperatures when not home at 53% and saving money on monthly heating/air conditioning costs at 52%.
While nearly two-thirds (63%) of customers installed the unit themselves vs. 37% who used a contractor/professional installer, the levels of overall satisfaction vary slightly between installation methods (868 among do-it-yourselfers vs. 862 among those using a contractor, on a 1,000-point scale). Less than one-half (42%) of customers who installed the smart thermostat themselves say it was easier than expected, while only 6% say it was more difficult than expected.
“There’s a clear connection between ease of installation/ease of use and satisfaction levels,” said Jeff Conklin, Vice President of Service Industries at J.D. Power. “Manufacturers would be wise to focus on the ease of connectivity as consumers’ expectations are continually changing toward 'make it easy for me.' Satisfaction is crucial because it leads to more recommendations and increased brand loyalty, which are important for these brands as they expand their offerings into related services.”
Connectivity issues, while minimal, affect overall satisfaction. Among the 12% of customers having difficulty connecting their system to the internet and the 7% of those having difficulty connecting from their mobile app, overall satisfaction is 818 and 776, respectively. Among customers who indicate not experiencing any connectivity problems, overall satisfaction is 888.
The report also finds a high level of customer engagement before making a purchase. Nearly half (45%) of customers looked at consumer review websites and 41% indicate those positive reviews were a reason they selected their smart thermostat.
Following are key findings of the study:
- Satisfied customers get the word out: More than 9 in 10 (92%) delighted smart thermostat customers (overall satisfaction scores above 900) say they “definitely will” recommend the brand to others, compared with the report average of 77%.
- Satisfied customers keep purchasing: More than half (51%) of delighted customers say they “definitely will” purchase other products/devices from the same brand, compared with the report average of 36%.
Nest ranks highest in overall customer satisfaction (869), performing particularly well in five of the 10 factors: internet connectivity; variety of features; ease of use; reliability; and energy efficiency. Emerson (White Rodgers) ranks second (866) and Ecobee and Honeywell tie for third (862).
Overall satisfaction among smart thermostat customers is 865, down from 877 in 2016.
The 2017 Smart Thermostat Satisfaction Report measures overall customer satisfaction with smart thermostat brands among those who purchased a smart thermostat system within the past 12 months. Satisfaction is examined across 10 factors (listed in order of importance): ease of use; ease of install/setup; reliability; energy efficiency; price paid; effectiveness of heating/cooling; internet connectivity; usefulness of app; variety of features; and customer service. Satisfaction is calculated on a 1,000-point scale.
The report is based on responses from 987 customers and was fielded from August to September 2017.
J.D. Power is a global leader in consumer insights, advisory services and data and analytics. These capabilities enable J.D. Power to help its clients drive customer satisfaction, growth and profitability. Established in 1968, J.D. Power is headquartered in Costa Mesa, Calif., and has offices serving North/South America, Asia Pacific and Europe. J.D. Power is a portfolio company of XIO Group, a global alternative investments and private equity firm headquartered in London, and is led by its four founders: Athene Li, Joseph Pacini, Murphy Qiao and Carsten Geyer.
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