The news: After their financial confidence was shaken by economic uncertainty and news about collapsing banks, customers took stock of their relationships with financial institutions (FIs).
And they decided to make some changes.
As a result, during the past year, 25% have switched banks, 34% have moved to different wealth managers, and 35% are working with different insurance providers.
That’s according to Salesforce’s Connected Financial Services Report, which surveyed 6,058 customers of FIs in 12 countries from March 7, 2023, through April 12, 2023.
Customers are feeling let down: Due to rising prices they see every day at the pump and in the store, increasing interest rates, and political turbulence on the news, customers feel less financially secure than they did last year. And they’re disappointed that their financial services providers didn’t better prepare them to navigate this uncertainty.
Customers will switch for a better experience: Digital experience is a leading reason customers give for switching providers. Just in the past year, 25% of customers switched banks, and over a third switched their insurers and wealth managers. Across all sectors, customers are seeking to get from FIs the same kind of experiences they’ve grown used to from other interactions in their digital lives.
Customers aren’t impressed with your chatbots: Though they’ve been rapidly adopted across the industry, some chatbot implementations fall short of satisfying customer needs. When asked about digital experiences they find frustrating, 39% of customers point to poorly functioning chatbots.
After chatbots, the most commonly encountered areas of friction include difficulty finding information online (29% of customers), inconsistent customer support (28%), and impersonal service (24%).
Show me that you know me: Customers want the companies they do business with to know who they are and what they’re looking for. Seventy-three percent expect companies to understand their unique needs and expectations—up from 66% in 2020, when the Salesforce survey asked the same question. The cost of that disappointment is steep:
But AI still makes many uncomfortable: In an effort to meet these needs, many firms are exploring how generative artificial intelligence (AI) can help them better serve their customers. Data from a separate Salesforce study shows 56% of financial services employees say it will transform how their firms personalize content. But the new survey data shows customers aren’t completely comfortable with AI.
Our take: With all the hype surrounding AI and its potential, it’s easy to forget the average consumer’s view. A Pew research survey found that a greater share of Americans say they’re more concerned than excited about the increased use of AI in daily life (38%) than say they are more excited than concerned (15%). Many express ambivalent views: 46% say they are equally concerned and excited. FIs have a lot of explaining and hand-holding to do to assuage customers' concerns. They can start by improving their chatbots.
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