US: Top 10 Recommend Rankings 2021
July 15th, 2021, YouGov

US: Top 10 Recommend Rankings 2021

A new analysis from YouGov reveals two winners come out on top for the list of most-recommended brands in America over the past year: Aldi and Trader Joe’s.

The 2021 rankings are based on YouGov BrandIndex’s positive Recommend score, which measures the percentage of a brand’s customers who would recommend it to a friend or colleague. Every brand in our Rankings has a minimum sample of 300 and has been tracked for at least six months.

Data from our recent International FMCG/CPG 2021 report reveals that US consumers increased their consumption of several food categories during the pandemic. From fresh to frozen foods, cupboard items to alcohol, Americans relied on supermarkets such as Aldi and Trader Joe’s for their grocery needs more than ever over the last 12 months.

Many people also sought escape in nature and open spaces, perhaps contributing to outdoor gear outfitter REI’s second place finish and Bass Pro Shops’ tenth-place position in the rankings.

The pandemic also accelerated engagement with many forms of media in the US, particularly video gaming. In fact, as shelter-in-place orders were in effect across e nation, two in five console/PC gamers in the US say they played video games more often during this period (40%). Video gaming has been a source of escapism long before the pandemic, however, and this supports why gaming brand Nintendo ranks among the top 10 recommended brands.

Japanese automaker Subaru is one of the most popular car brands in the US and recently reported 102% sales increase in March 2021 compared to the same period in 2020. It ranks as the ninth most recommended brand in America—a testament to its customer advocacy—and will be partnering with Toyota on a new electric vehicle soon.

Texas Roadhouse, USAA, John Deere, Centrum, and Alka-Seltzer also earn top 10 spots as some of the most recommended brands over the pandemic year.

YouGov also looks at the brands that made the greatest improvement to their Recommend score in the past 12 months. Men’s personal care brand Right Guard shows the biggest year-over-year gain in the metric.

The appearance of several travel brands such as Amtrak, United Airlines and Spirit Airlines on the list of Top Improvers signals that, despite the pandemic, consumers have had positive experiences when it comes to travel this year.

One grocery store brand, Save A Lot, and CPG brands Hill’s Pet Nutrition and A&W also strengthened their customer advocacy over the last year. Skullcandy, and Gulf, too, made major strides improving their brands’ Recommend score and complete the US list of improvers.

Methodology: The YouGov Recommend Rankings 2021 are calculated using data we collect from members of the public in markets around the globe every day, from our flagship YouGov BrandIndex tool.


Every brand’s performance is tracked daily against a range of metrics, and our Recommend ranking measures the percentage of a brand’s customers who would recommend it to a friend or colleague. The rankings data can be further developed with YouGov Recommend+ a fresh approach to understanding consumer advocacy.

YouGov Recommend+ is a highly cost-effective NPS® diagnostics approach that gives marketers the full picture on what drives existing and potential promoters by speaking directly to those customers who recommend your brand.

YouGov BrandIndex draws data from interviews with our 15 million registered panel members across 40 sectors and more than 55 countries globally. This year’s ranking includes consumer views from across 33 markets, including USA, China, Germany, India and the UK, and many more.

Want to see how other markets compare? Our annual rankings highlights the top 10 recommended brands across 33 markets and top 10 most improved brands across 29 markets. Click here to get a copy.