Amex Rides Wave of Credit Card Satisfaction

August 19, 2011

This article is included in these additional categories:

Analytics, Automated & MarTech | Brand Metrics | Data-driven | Financial Services | Retail & E-Commerce | Uncategorized

jdpower-credit-card-aug-2011.JPGAmerican Express ranks highest in customer satisfaction among credit card providers for a fifth consecutive year with a score of 786 on a 1,000-point scale and performs particularly well in the benefits and services, credit card terms and rewards factors, according to the J.D. Power and Associates 2011 US Credit Card Satisfaction Study. Discover Card follows with a score of 779, and performs well in the interaction factor. Barclaycard ranks third with 739.

The industry average score is 731. Chase also scores higher than average (735). The study measures customer satisfaction with credit cards by examining six key factors: interaction; credit card terms; billing and payment process; rewards; benefits and services; and problem resolution.

Satisfaction Rises Dramatically from Last 2 Yrs

Overall credit card satisfaction averages 731 on a 1,000-point scale in 2011, up substantially from 714 in 2010 and 705 in 2009. Satisfaction improves across all factors, with substantial increases in satisfaction with problem resolution and credit card terms.

In the problem resolution factor, customers report fewer problems; 11% in 2011, 21% lower than 14% in 2010. In addition, any problems that do occur tend to be resolved more quickly this year (4.9 days compared to 5.8 in 2010) and require fewer contacts (1.8 contacts compared to 2.2 in 2010).

Brand Image Improves

Customer perceptions of card issuer brand image have also improved in 2011. Overall reputation of brands in the industry has increased again this year, as measured across six attributes, with financial stability showing the greatest increase from 2010.

J.D. Power analysis indicates improvement in credit card satisfaction may be attributed to a decline in interest rate increases reported, as well as a decrease in the impact of interest rate increases on overall satisfaction. In addition, 35% of customers say they understand their credit card terms, up 9% from 32% in 2010.

‘Transactors’ and ‘Resolvers’ Both More Satisfied

While satisfaction among transactors (customers who always or usually pay their entire credit card balance each month) declined in 2010, J.D. Power analysis shows satisfaction in 2011 has improved among both transactors and revolvers (customers who typically carry account balances).

comScore: Low APR Most Important

Four in 10 US credit cardholders cited a low APR/interest rate as the most important feature of a credit card, according to data collected by comScore in December 2010. Findings from the “Online Credit Card Report” indicate the percentage citing low APR was about 43% higher than the 28% citing no annual fee, the next-most-popular credit card feature among cardholders.

Rewards/points was the only other feature to receive consideration as the most important credit card feature by a double-digit share of cardholders (13%).

About the Data: The 2011 US Credit Card Satisfaction Study is based on responses from more than 8,700 credit card customers. The study, published by J.D. Power and Associates, was fielded in May and June 2011 and is the source of the enclosed chart.

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