Justin Sullivan—Getty Images
By Martha C. White
April 7, 2015

McDonald’s recent announcement that it will begin serving breakfast all day in some stores as a test gave the burger giant a big boost in hungry customers’ minds, a new survey shows.

Fans of the Egg McMuffin and McGriddles were happy when the news broke last week that the fast food purveyor will start serving breakfast all day in some San Diego-area restaurants. According to YouGov BrandIndex, “42% of frequent breakfast eaters… would consider purchasing from McDonald’s the next time they are looking to eat.” That’s higher than Wendy’s, Burger King or Taco Bell.

“McDonald’s has also seen the biggest improvement on customer satisfaction among frequent breakfast diners,” YouGov says. And McDonald’s “buzz score,” which measures consumer perception of what they’ve heard about the brand in the past two weeks, is the highest it’s been since the beginning of the year among adults who eat fast food breakfasts at least once a month. The score ranges from -100 to 100, with zero as a neutral perception. At the beginning of the year, McDonald’s scored a 1. As of yesterday, that number had shot up to 11, passing Burger King’s score of 9 and Taco Bell’s score of 7 (which the research company notes is likely disappointing given how heavily the brand is promoting its breakfast waffle taco).

Other market research also shows that diners are ready to scarf McMuffins all day long. Market research company Technomic found that roughly half of consumers surveyed enjoy eating breakfast food outside of morning hours. “Demand is apparently robust for all-day breakfast… all-day breakfast could be a much-needed win,” the company said in a blog post Monday. And market research firm Mintel found that sales of breakfast meat and eggs went up by 300% between 2010 and 2013, while breakfast sales at fast food and so-called “fast casual” restaurant chains went up by 5% in 2013 alone.

Wall Street likes the idea, too — not because analysts necessarily crave the chain’s hash browns, but because rivals like Taco Bell have noticed that breakfast is a bright spot in an otherwise lukewarm fast-food market, and have been ramping up their breakfast efforts accordingly. “The customer demand is there” Janney Capital Markets analyst Mark Kalinowski wrote in a note to investors.

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