Bank customers in 2015 have more options, literally at their fingertips, on when, where, and how they choose to bank. Many in the industry believe that a major differentiator for prosperous banks will be the adoption and successful implementation of customer-centric initiatives.1,2,3 As a result, the customer-centric bank will ensure that customers are satisfied with their banking experience regardless of the channel used.
This study is the third edition of the CFI Group Bank Satisfaction Barometer survey and it is intended, in part, to determine how well banks are faring in the current retail banking environment. The results show an environment that has stabilized following the financial crisis of 2009. The overall Bank Satisfaction Barometer 2015 score of 79 (on a 0-100 scale) is identical to the initial baseline score from the first study conducted in 2013, and it is down only 1 point from last year. These steady scores indicate a relatively satisfied and stable banking customer environment.
During the month of June 2015, CFI Group asked bank customers across the U.S. to rate their customer experience with their primary financial institution. The Bank Satisfaction Barometer looks not only at overall satisfaction of bank customers, but it also examines the key drivers of satisfaction and important business outcomes affected by satisfaction. The key drivers of satisfaction include: Branch Staff, Branch Convenience, Online & Mobile Banking offerings, ATMs, Products & Services offered, Rates & Fees, and Information & Communications received from the bank. Customers were also asked to rate their overall level of satisfaction. Finally, customers were asked about their likelihood to recommend, do more business with, and remain a customer of their bank.
Based on the data, CFI Group was able to assign impact weights to each of the seven identified satisfaction drivers in order to determine which driver has the most effect on satisfaction. Improvements to these drivers will lead to a higher overall Bank Satisfaction Barometer score which will, in turn, result in increased customer loyalty, more word of mouth recommendations, and an increased likelihood that customers will be more agreeable to the cross-selling of complementary products and services. A stable or increasing Bank Satisfaction Barometer is a positive sign for the industry.
The Bank Satisfaction Barometer model is shown in Figure 1. The satisfaction drivers are listed on the left-hand side of the model Driver scores are the aggregate respondent scores for each individual survey question (respondents were asked to rate each item on a 1-to-10 scale with 1 being “poor” and 10 being “excellent”). These scores are then converted to a 0-to-100 scale for reporting purposes. It is important to note that these scores are aggregate averages, not percentages. The score is best thought of as an index, with 0 meaning “the worst possible experience” and 100 meaning “the best possible experience.”
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