What Customers Look For In a Bank
Posted on 23/04/2016
 

In a 2014 study polling over 80,000 retail banking consumers worldwide, the top reason for switching banks was poor customer service. The evolution of 21st century banking may be driven by digitization and personalization, but the real money remains in customer satisfaction.

No matter the size of the institution, if banks don’t shift their focus to tackle demographic changes, they risk losing market share to competitors and becoming irrelevant. Here are five best practices banks could do well to adopt, because they are exactly what customers are shopping for.

 

1.       Knowledgeable employees. Just as when students get frustrated by careless or uninformed teachers, customers doubt the credibility of a bank when its representatives can’t address their concerns. Whether a customer calls, emails or tweets, excellent customer service means providing the right answer to the customer’s question. Banking agents who deliver first-contact resolution are glorified by both bank and customer.

2.       Customer relationship management (CRM). CRM solutions equip banks with the analytics to determine what services and products customers want based on their previous interactions, present buying habits, and future needs. The implementation of CRM ensures that banks are able to customize their offerings for each customer; process their requests in a timely fashion; and manage the relationship more effectively across the stages of initiation and maintenance.

 

 

3.       Multichannel presence. It’s obvious to see that branches are no longer the sole face of the bank. Customers want to be able to engage with banks on the channel of their choosing, the one that’s convenient to them at any given instant, and that could be phone, email, live chat, or social media. The mobile service offering is gaining traction, particularly because customers value 24/7 access at their fingertips. It’s critical that banks display alacrity in responsiveness through every single one of their customer service portals.

4.       Efficient self-service. Nothing could be more powerful than helping people help themselves. An investment in self-service knowledge management, underscored by organization and searchability, is key. That means a bank’s website should house a wealth of information, as should additional channels like mobile and social media. While self-assistance is paramount, it should never be a stand-alone option and is best complemented by live chat or email.

5.       Feedback. How better to serve your customer and understand their values than by giving them a forum to speak their mind! Enlist the help of your consumers by soliciting their feedback via surveys, social media, and direct calls. Listen to their voices, take into account their wants, and pool this data to improve and fine-tune your product and service grid.

 

As banks compete for customers, they’ll need to sharpen their service delivery and create the perception of unique client value. After all, brand loyalty starts with making the customer feel at home every minute, every hour, and every day. 

 

Danielle Issa, Beirutista

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