Customers want advice from retail banks, but many find expectations unmet

by Francis Monfort06 Mar 2018

Customers look to retail banks as a primary source of financial advice, but many banks fail to meet expectations, according to the 2018 US Retail Banking Advice Study released by J.D. Power.

The survey found that 78% of retail bank customers want guidance. Customers most commonly sought quick tips for improving their financial situation at 41%. Other common types of advice customers want are investment-related advice (39%), retirement-related advice (35%), advice to help keep track of spending and household budgets (33%), and saving for a large purchase (29%).

However, only 28% of customers said they can remember a recent experience where they received any financial advice. J.D. Power said this indicates a missed opportunity for banks to connect with customers. The mismatch is more significant given that customers have a strong interest in receiving advice, with 89% of customers who received guidance saying they benefited from the information.

The study also found that millennial customers were the most interest to receive guidance. Customers between 25 and 39 years old showed the highest satisfaction levels with advice received from banks, and 34% of customers below 40 years old said they are “very interested” in receiving bank advice. Also, only 9% of customers between 25 and 39 years old felt the advice received from their bank added no value.

“For banks, the key takeaway from this study is that there is a huge opportunity to leverage a combination of in-person and digital interactions to provide advice and guidance that assist customers in their financial journey,” said Paul McAdam, senior director of the banking practice at J.D. Power.


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