High Street banks lagging behind challenger rivals in digital services, survey finds

William Turvill
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Three-quarters of contacts between customers and banks are digital, the British survey found (Source: Getty)

Challenger banks are outperforming their high street peers in meeting consumer needs for digital services, a new survey out today finds.

Traditional lenders are falling behind in terms of mobile, online access and digital payment options.

The survey also found that UK banks, overall, are considered to be underperforming in areas such as safety, security, fairness, reliability and transparency. They were also found to be under par in relation to providing financial advice and customised services.

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The results were based on a survey by US financial services group FIS of 1,000 British banking customers for its annual Performance Against Customer Expectations (Pace) study.

Despite UK banks’ shortcomings, the study found they are closing the gap on counterparts in Germany and the United States, improving their Pace index score by six points from 2016.

“This new research shows just how important digital banking is becoming to British banking consumers,” said Bruce Jennings of FIS, commenting on the finding that three-quarters of contacts between consumers are now digital.

“With challenger banks leading the way in the UK in this respect, high street banks need to catch up quickly or risk losing their future customer base.”

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He added: “Despite this shift to digital, our research shows that the face-to-face element remains critical to the success of today’s banks.

“With senior millennials and Gen Xers struggling to identify the best personalised investment advice, there is a clear opportunity for banks to develop offerings targeted to the investment needs of this important segment.

“And with banks across the country reviewing their physical branch footprint, providing the right digital touchpoints for personalised services is incredibly important for banks to remain relevant to their consumers.”

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