The majority of the UK’s top high street banks fail to meet customer’s expectations on service, according to a study.
Only HSBC and US bank Citi were found to offer customers an online or in-branch experience that is above expectation from the ten banks surveyed, with HSBC coming out top.
The study, based on 100 “mystery shopping” visits and analysis by brand and marketing consultancy Prophet, found that of the eight remaining banks Lloyds TSB was found to be offering the worst customer experience.
Natwest, Halifax and Abbey were among those found to be offering “below expectation” experience.
Mystery shoppers were asked to grade the ten organisations on four criteria – branch experience, website experience, service speed and service quality – on a scale of one to five with one being “extremely below expectations”.
Vanessa Cohen, partner at Prophet, says customers’ demand for good service has increased since some of the major high street banks have taken taxpayer money.
She adds those banks that “seize the opportunity to up their customer experience game could see a great return”.
“Because banking is part of everyday life, customer experience is particularly influential in shaping brand reputation,” she says, adding “consequently an almost obsessive attention to detail to delivering on customer expectations, and beyond, is required.”