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Industry Research : Customers Want Personalized Experiences and Service from Their Banks
Consumers demand more from their user experiences, and as banks continue to implement strategies to improve the customer experiences and increase brand loyalty, NGDATA™, the customer experience management solutions company, announces the results of a consumer banking survey.
"The research shows that customers want to be valued, and by effectively using existing customer data, banks have an exciting opportunity to drive actionable results that deliver greater revenue to the business."
The in-depth survey of more than 500 U.S. consumers assessed their experiences with their banks. It also examined consumer views on their loyalty, channels with which they interact with their banks, and assessments on their banks’ level of customer understanding.
Highlights and Key Facts
Customer Service is King
42.2 percent of respondents said customer service is the most important factor when selecting a bank, compared to bank location (24.3 percent), efficient online services (22 percent), and financial rates/loans (11.5 percent) offered by the bank. Furthermore, 37.7 percent of respondents hold multiple bank accounts, with 42.5 percent of 45-54 year olds holding 1-3 accounts—indicating that banks need to identify their high value, likely-to-churn customers.
Banking Online is Top Channel, but Banks Need to Support Multichannel Customer Experiences
While online (website, email) is the dominant channel customers use to interact with their bank (49.4 percent), still 37.9 percent of the business is conducted in-person at the branch while 12.6 percent are interactions via phone.
Customer Loyalty is Hard to Come by
Nearly half of respondents (47.4 percent) are not very loyal to their banks, with 26.8 percent being somewhat loyal to their bank while 20.6 percent are neutral or not loyal.
Consumers Are Not Overly Confident Their Bank Understands their Needs and Preferences
Only 20.1 percent are very confident that their bank understands them, and 37.1 percent are somewhat confident.
The research indicates that the overwhelming demand for quality customer service should motivate banks and their executives to improve their customer experience levels to stay ahead of competitors, and bolster customer loyalty and growth. Banks can achieve this by leveraging existing and historical customer data to target customers at the individual level and foster a more personalized experience.
"The fact that almost half of the survey respondents are not very loyal isn’t reassuring for banks, and is alarming for an industry sector that most people consider a trusted advisor," said Luc Burgelman, CEO of NGDATA. "The best way for banks to increase and maintain loyalty is to gain a deeper knowledge of the customer—their interests, behavior, preferences and propensities—and in turn, they can create better, personalized user experiences that enhance brand loyalty and increase the customer value."
Consumer Banking Strategies Spotlight Need for Multichannel Strategy
Consumers receive information from and interact with their banks through a number of channels—phone, online (web, social media, email), and in-person—and while consumers predominantly use online channels to interact with their bank (49.4 percent), a large number of survey respondents (37.9 percent) still conduct business in-person at the branch. This research underscores the need for banks to have a multichannel strategy that ensures they’re reaching the customer via all the channels with which they interact.
For instance, if a customer is conducting business at the bank branch, it is critical that the bank has quick access to that customer’s individual profile—i.e. their engagement, transactional, CRM, website history, social, financial—so they have the information they need to deliver timely, appropriate content and offers to the customer on the spot.
Bank’s Lack of Customer Understanding is a Golden Opportunity to Take (More) Action with Data
Banks are sitting on a gold mine, with billions of existing data points on their customers that can help them better understand their customers’ needs. Banks are well-positioned to use this data to improve the customer experience and revenues, yet only 20.1 percent of survey respondents feel very confident that their bank understands them.
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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Published: Monday, November 3, 2014