Customer Satisfaction Might Be the Only True Competitive Advantage Left in Banking - The MSR Group

How important is customer satisfaction for banks? Extremely. With so little else to compete on, delivering a great customer experience is the best way to make your bank stand out. In this article, we discuss why banks should care about the customer experience and how customer satisfaction is linked to better financial results.

Customer Satisfaction Is the Largest Competitive Advantage for Banks

The banking industry is a commoditized space. With everyone offering nearly the same products and services without much room to compete on price, the experience customers have with their banks is what gives one bank a competitive advantage over another. There are two areas where banks can really look to stand out by delivering an incredible customer experience.

Interpersonal Service

In our experience, the relationship between a bank and their customer has the biggest impact on customer satisfaction. People want to be treated as if they matter. They want to form a relationship with their bank, and they want their bank to make an effort to get to know them instead of just pushing a product.

Consistent Omni-Channel Experience

In modern banking, there are many ways for customers to interact with a bank, including online and mobile banking, at an ATM, and over the phone. One of the biggest things we’ve seen is that a consistent experience across channels matters to customers. Whether it’s transferring information quickly between channels or making sure deposit times are consistent no matter how a deposit is made, these things matter. To provide a great customer experience, banks need to deliver on the expectations their customers have in all channels.

Effective Problem-Solving

Customers are reasonable. They know that an occasional problem or mishap is possible. But they also expect that their bank will make the situation right. This means fixing the problem quickly and effectively.

Mistakes that Lower Customer Satisfaction for Banks

With our extensive experience measuring customer satisfaction for banks, we’ve seen some common mistakes that can really have a negative impact.

Treating a Call Center Like a Cost Center

Your call center is a safety net. A quality call center solution can really help to improve the customer experience. But when corners are cut to reduce costs, your call center can do more harm than good. By not giving your call center enough resources or outsourcing to the most affordable solution, you could risk providing a poor customer experience.

Avoiding Interpersonal Communication 

Though this isn’t as large a problem as it was in the recent past, banks that push customers out of branches and lean on digital space to reduce costs are missing the interpersonal communication and relationship building that is so important to banking customers. Having quality digital solutions is convenient for customers, but you still have to be committed to getting to know the people that bank with you.

 The Result of Great Customer Satisfaction for Banks

Plain and simple, the result is better financial outcomes. Being incredibly involved with customer satisfaction in the banking industry, we’ve seen firsthand how big of an impact it has for a bank’s financial success.

The results are two-fold. First, your current customers are far more likely to open more accounts or use more services if they’ve had an overall positive experience. A client with just a checking account could add a savings account and use you for their mortgage when they buy a home. Second, satisfied customers are far more likely to recommend you to others. This is especially true in business banking.

How to Measure Customer Satisfaction

Because customer satisfaction is so important in the banking industry, measuring the customer experience and identifying ways to improve in this area is essential. This is our specialty. APECS, our comprehensive customer satisfaction measurement program, is designed to make understanding your strengths and weaknesses simple and makes taking action easy. Learn more about APECS today!

Knowing how important customer satisfaction is in banking, it’s time to take action! Improving the customer experience is your best way to differentiate yourself from the competition and improve the financial performance for your bank.