Consumers are less satisfied with the online banking services of credit unions than they are with those of banks, according to an annual survey.
Credit unions earned a score of 86 out of 100 in customer online banking satisfaction, one point less than the score earned by large banks, according to the 2011 Online Banking Study conducted by the Ann Arbor, Mich.-based research firm ForeSee Results.
Large banks saw a five-point gain in the study from 2010, putting them ahead of credit unions for the first time since the survey began in 2003. CUs saw a two-point gain from last year.
The Online Banking Study gives aggregate scores to five categories of financial institutions based on size and type – top five banks, top six-to-10 banks, large banks, community banks and credit unions.
The results are based on a survey with nearly 3,000 respondents conducted in April 2011. ForeSee Results uses the online methodology of the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) founded at the University of Michigan to analyze survey data, the firm said.
“While nearly every category improved since last year, large banks gained the most, surging five points to barely overtake credit unions, which climbed two points,” the report states. “This disparity in year-over-year satisfaction gains (large banks +5; credit unions +2) is perhaps more significant than the one-point score difference.”
ForeSee Results President and CEO Larry Freed, who authored the report, said while credit unions earned high scores in the study, it’s getting tougher for them to compete with large banks in the online banking arena.
“Overall when you look at the score, it’s still a strong score,” Freed told Credit Union Times. “But at the end of the day, credit unions are facing some challenges. Because of the consolidations that have taken place, large banks have become more focused on the customer than they were before. And as they deploy new channels, such as mobile channels, the bar is being raised for credit unions to keep up.”
The study also found financial institution customers are far more satisfied with online banking than they are with offline banking and customers who are satisfied with their financial institution’s online banking services are 63% more likely to trust their institution and 56% more likely to be satisfied with their institution overall.