Personal banking satisfaction level at 19-year high

The satisfaction level of personal banking customers has risen to an almost two-decade high, according to the latest figures from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey.

Satisfaction levels increased by 0.3 per cent from December 2014 to January 2015, hitting a 19-year high of 82.9 per cent. This marks a 1.3 per cent increase over the last 12 months.

The big four banks all came in at similar levels, with the CBA managing to hold the top spot at 81.9 per cent. Westpac was close behind with 81.3 per cent, followed by NAB (80.9 per cent) and ANZ (78.9 per cent).

Westpac is in the lead in terms of main financial institution (MFI) customer rankings, registering a satisfaction level of 84.1 per cent – the highest result on record for a big four bank. NAB (83.4 per cent), CBA (83.3 per cent) and ANZ (81.2 per cent) followed.

“The flexibility of having many ways to more conveniently deal with banks without having to rely on branches has proven popular with customers as the very high satisfaction levels for each channel indicate,” Roy Morgan Research Industry Communications Director Norman Morris said.

“This appears to have contributed to overall satisfaction levels, which are the highest they’ve been in nearly two decades.”

In terms of banking channels, the internet was clearly the most popular choice. 62.3 per cent of bank customers said they dealt with their bank online, compared to 33.9 per cent using a branch. 90.2 per cent of big four bank customers said they were satisfied with dealing with them on the internet, 87.7 per cent said they approved of branches and 79.1 per cent said they were happy with phone banking.

Bendigo saw the highest home loan customer satisfaction rating of 91.5 per cent, the highest among the major banks and a clear leader ahead of Suncorp (81.8 per cent), Westpac (81.4 per cent) and CBA’s lead among non-home customers (82.6 per cent). ANZ saw the lowest results for satisfaction among both home loan customers and non-home customers, with 78.3 per cent and 79.1 per cent receptively.

Mr Morris said the rise in positivity highlights the need for banks to grab a hold of the driving factors customers are responding to.

“The real challenge for banks is to turn this positive trend in customer satisfaction into improved levels of customer loyalty and advocacy. The latest Roy Morgan Research analysis shows that the major banks are only obtaining around one-third of the value of their customers’ financial services wallet. To improve this, it is vital for them to understand the level of “very satisfied” customers, as this correlates with higher share of wallet,” Mr Morris said.

“It will also be important for the big four banks to achieve satisfaction levels more on a par with their smaller competitors if they are to increase cross-sell and retain customers.”

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