Inflation crisis fuels financial planning tool adoption, but open banking goes overlooked

The news: Demand for financial planning tools in the UK has soared over the past 12 months as the cost of living crisis escalates. But a study from Yapily suggests that consumers and businesses may not be aware of open banking-powered solutions that could help them manage their finances.

Key stats: The Open Banking and Financial Well Being report surveyed 2,000 UK full-time working professionals and 500 financial business decision-makers on how they are navigating rising costs in the UK.

  • Eighty-eight percent of consumers said they’ve used financial products and tools over the past 12 months to better manage their finances, and 68% said they’ve used budgeting, bill management, and credit score-tracking products for the first time.
  • Ninety-four percent of businesses had to tweak operations due to rising costs, and 75% said they’ve turned to financial products and services to help manage cash flow.

Consumer confidence: UK citizens have long been dissatisfied with the support they get from their financial institutions regarding the cost of living crisis.

  • Nearly half (49%) of the Yapily survey respondents said they don’t think their financial institutions were doing enough to support them.
  • But while 80% were very or somewhat confident that they were aware of all of their financial options, 52% had never heard of open banking.

Businesses are slow to use open banking: Reeling from rising costs, UK businesses are beginning to lean into digital options offered outside of traditional banking channels.

  • Thirty-five percent and 38% of businesses surveyed said they trust digital challenger banks as much as they trust incumbent banks to manage their money and their data, respectively.
  • One-third of respondents are considering open banking solutions but aren’t using any yet, and 32% said they don’t use open banking or have never heard of it.

The big takeaway: UK consumers and businesses want to take control of their financial lives, but they may not be aware of how open banking can help them.

  • UK consumers may be using open banking-powered solutions like Apple Pay or Google Pay without realizing it. Greater knowledge of open banking could encourage consumers and businesses to use other open banking solutions.
  • UK businesses seem to be more aware of open banking solutions, and though uptake of these solutions is slow, their growing confidence in digital challengers signals openness to the solutions open banking can provide.

If UK consumers don’t know what open banking can do, they may be missing out on valuable solutions. Open banking providers must clearly communicate and demonstrate how open banking can aggregate consumers’ data to provide a more complete and real-time picture of their financial lives.

This article originally appeared in Insider Intelligence’s Banking Innovation Briefing—a daily recap of top stories reshaping the banking industry. Subscribe to have more hard-hitting takeaways delivered to your inbox daily.