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Understanding Consumer Behavior In Retail Banking

4386 words - 18 pages

Understanding customer
behavior in retail banking
The impact of the credit crisis across Europe
February 2010


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Executive summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
Key findings

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The impact on trust . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
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In an economic climate as difficult as this one,
fostering loyal customers is important to achieve growth.
In the research that follows, Ernst & Young surveyed bank customers (individual consumers)
across six European countries – in Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. More than
6,100 respondents were asked about their relationships with their banks, and specifically about
their levels of satisfaction, what they were looking for from the institutions, and their intentions
and demands going forward.
We conducted this research with the objectives of:
►► Highlighting the risks and opportunities facing the retail banking sector with respect to
managing customer relationships today across Europe.
►► Analyzing what is relevant to a successful banking relationship, so as to achieve and maintain
customer satisfaction in the current climate.
►► Identifying and commenting on what we see as the key action points that banks must take if
they are to continue expanding their customer base in a challenging market.
We would like to thank the participants for their valuable time and insights, and we hope that
these findings will assist the sector as it responds to the dawning of a new era in the wake of the
global credit crisis.

Beatriz Sanz Saiz
Global Customer Leader
Performance Improvement

Pierre Pilorge
EMEIA Financial Services Advisory
Markets Leader

Understanding customer behavior in retail banking The impact of the credit crisis across Europe


Executive summary
Without doubt, the credit crisis has had a profound and lasting effect on the way in which
European customers interact with the banks that they serve. Gone are the days when financial
institutions were among the most respected and trusted organizations on the high street; today,
customer trust in banks has fallen dramatically. Across Europe, some 45% of customers say the
crisis has had a negative, or very negative, impact on their trust in the banking industry.
With diminishing trust comes diminishing loyalty and our survey uncovers a marked and
significant demise in the fidelity banks enjoy among their customer base. The concept of the
main bank with which customers hold most of their accounts and do the majority of their
business is blurring across Europe.
Our survey found that 24% of respondents had at some point changed their bank account, with
10% of the change happening in the last two years alone. A further 11% of Europeans say that they
plan to change their main provider in the future. Customers in Spain (20%) and Italy (14%) are the
most likely to change their banks with only 6% in Belgium and France planning to do likewise.
These findings show that banks must work hard to meet the challenges of retaining customers,
restoring public confidence and providing the services and products that customers really want.

Risks and opportunities
There is a new era of risk and opportunity, with customers increasingly mobile and...

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