Consumers highly value online banking—and those that prefer digital services use them a lot. But a recent report published by Bank Administration Institute and analytics leader SAS indicate that the industry isn’t keeping up with consumer preferences.
The report found that 40% of respondents use online banking at least five times a month. About 22% use mobile banking just as much. And though satisfaction varies by bank size, in general more than 40% of respondents feel neutral, dissatisfied, or extremely dissatisfied with mobile banking, and more than 20% feel the same about online banking.
Potential to capture millennial relationships
On the positive side, dissatisfaction means room to capture new market share, especially with millennials. These young adults are just selecting their primary banking relationships. And they’re especially partial to mobile, the report points out. By attracting millennials today, financial institutions can solidify relations with them as they approach the years when they’ll need more sophisticated financial services, the report authors say.
But the effort can’t stop with starting an account—millennials can be fickle. According to the survey, 38% of millennials ages 18-20, nearly half of ages 21-24, and 40% of ages 25-34 indicated they would switch to a new financial institution if it offered innovative products and services.
Even for those customers who prefer digital channels, personal service matters. Nearly half of customers ages 21-24 believe high-quality personal service is more important than financial expertise. Those numbers dip only slightly in subsequent age ranges.
Omnichannel’s importance underscored
Still, while many customers prefer digital, they are not using it exclusively. They may visit a branch once, pay bills on the website, and deposit checks via mobile. The personal relationship can’t get lost across channels, the report warns.
So, in the authors’ view, the financial institution that creates an ideal customer service experience in an omnichannel environment will win. In a best-case scenario, customers shouldn’t need to repeat their problem to a call center agent after attempting to resolve it themselves online. Instead, the agent sees what they have started online and can quickly clear up the issue.
“The only way to provide the services customers increasingly demand across all channels is by applying advanced analytics,” says David Wallace, global financial services marketing manager at SAS. “Analytics enables banks to combine data from wherever a customer interacts with them—online, in store, or mobile—to create a clearer picture of each customer. That view makes it more likely that they can keep current customers and attract new ones.”
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