Three quarters of banking customers say they would consider switching – and dissatisfaction is the key driver
Few people display unwavering loyalty to their provider, and two in five banking customers state that they would consider switching their account to another provider, according to a new report from YouGov.
Although half of all banking customers do say that finding a better deal elsewhere would be a possible reason for switching providers, switching mostly has more to do with negative developments with an existing provider. Of these, the most (49%) likely to spur change would be if their provider started to charge fees that they would find unreasonable. After this, factors such as dissatisfaction with customer services (48%) or products are the next most common factors that would cause people to start thinking about moving their account elsewhere. A third (31%) say that a financial incentive offered by a competing bank would be a motivating factor for switching, while 29% say that the closure of nearby bank branches would be a reason to switch.
Preference for well-known brands remains strong
Research into attitudes towards purchasing financial products emphasises just how difficult it is for new providers to enter the market. While few believe that all financial services providers are the same, people do have a strong preference for buying financial products and services from well-known brand names.
Only about one in four (24%) are willing to do business with a completely new brand. However, openness to buying products from completely new market entrants rises notably above the average among men (31%), 25 to 39 year olds (36%), and Londoners.
Quality of online banking the top factor used to assess value
Highlighting just how much the internet has revolutionised retail banking, the quality of online banking services is the most likely factor people (62%) use to judge the value of their bank or building society. The high level of emphasis placed on online banking is linked to the fact that this channel is the most frequent point of contact respondents have with their bank or building society.
The next most important factors people (56%) use to judge the value they receive from their bank or building society are directly associated with the products they have purchased. People want to feel reassured that the products or services they’ve arranged are competitive, and that they benefit from low fees and charges (54%).
In terms of customer service, more emphasis is placed on the quality of in-branch staff than on telephone banking services (48%). In terms of what people look for in a branch, people are primarily concerned with proximity to where they live (33%), and the amount of time spent queuing inside, rather than the availability of extended opening hours (14%).