This IDC Financial Insights Perspective analyzes the results of the online survey of U.K. consumers of retail banking services, customers of the high street banks, plus a smaller sample of building society customers and mid-tier players. The survey allows IDC to drill down into the attitudes toward the various aspects of the retail banking customer proposition and the different delivery channels.
There is a prospect of a revolution in customer service in the U.K. retail banking industry, which is a consequence of a number of factors. Some of these are:
- Regulatory tailwinds. Regulators are compelling banks to build open application programming interfaces (APIs) to participate in digital customer portals by 2018.
- Reduced barriers to entry for new players. Regulators have also been streamlining the licensing process for new players, while 3rd Platform technologies (cloud computing, mobile, and Big Data and analytics) can underpin cost-effective digital business models for new entrants.
- The impact on customer service from other industries. Digital start-ups are following in the footsteps of Google and Amazon of delivering an experience that would have been impossible a short time ago, and the onus is on the banking industry to follow.
With these impacts coming from the supply side of the industry, it is worth examining the state of consumer behavior and attitudes. It remains the case that the number of people who actually switch their banking providers is relatively small, so examining the wants, needs, and behavior of customers is an important part of understanding the reason for this.
This survey can help banks and technology suppliers define their strategies for channel engagement with their customer base, align their offerings with demand, and avoid wasting time on unwanted updates or offerings.
Some key findings include:
- 50% of people still choose the branch as their favored channel to apply for a new product.
- However, 61% of people visit branches with tellers less than once a month or never.
- 45% of people would be interested in using their mobile apps to block their credit or debit cards.
- 46% are uninterested in interacting with their banks through social media.
- Only 26% of people have heard of Android Pay as awareness of mobile near-field communication (NFC) schemes remains low.