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Interaction not Transaction
Friday, April 26, 2013 8:00 AM



Nearly 70 percent of U.S. consumers would provide banks with more private information in exchange for more personalized services, higher security against identity theft, and more simplicity in managing their finances, according to a study by Cisco.

The 2013 Cisco Customer Experience Report, which focused on retail banking, analyzed consumers’ desires for a more personalized banking experience over multiple channels, including online, mobile, telephones, video conferencing, and bank branches.

Study respondents pointed to the following attributes as most important when interacting with their financial institutions: 

  • Efficiency (68 percent)

  • Competence (65 percent)

  • Availability (63 percent)

Consumers are willing to exchange more details about their financial habits if banks become active advisors in exchange for greater protection from identity theft (83 percent), increased savings (80 percent), personalized service (78 percent), and greater simplicity (56 percent) in managing their finances.

  • 70 percent of consumers indicated being comfortable with the increasing use of virtual communications in addition to in-person financial conversations.

  • Only 45 percent of U.S. consumers feel their bank has enough information to offer them personal services, while 63 percent of bankers feel they have enough personal information on their customers to provide those services.

  • 53 percent of U.S. consumers would provide their bank with a fingerprint or other biometrics to verify financial transactions to protect against identity theft. Globally, 61 percent of consumers would share biometric data, with Japanese consumers least likely with only 31 percent and Chinese consumers are most likely at 94 percent.

  • 60 percent of U.S. consumers would provide additional personal information to receive greater simplicity in managing their finances.

  • 57 percent of U.S. consumers do not want their bank to share their personal information outside the bank, even if it improves quality of service.

  • More than 60 percent of U.S. consumers are comfortable communicating with their financial provider using technology (such as texting, email, or video). Globally, 7 in 10 consumers and 92 percent of bankers are comfortable communicating using virtual technology. Only 28 percent of U.S. consumers favored smartphones for video conversations with bankers, while 72 percent preferred a laptop or desktop computer.

  • 36 percent of U.S. consumers would open an account with a bank that is completely virtual if it offered the best and more secure services; contrasted by 60 percent of consumers globally who would open accounts with virtual banks

  • Almost half of consumers in U.S. (48 percent) would be comfortable entirely securing a loan or mortgage using technology like video to communicate with their bank


Thought processes between consumers and bankers are misaligned. In consumer responses,

  • 77 percent indicated a desire for more identity theft security

  • 73 percent wanted advice to increase their savings

  • 67 percent requested more financial education

  • 47 percent wanted an assessment of their financial status as compared to other clients


Bank managers thought consumers' desire for these services would be roughly 20 percent higher when surveyed.

There has been an “explosion” around personal financial management and mobile banking apps could play a large role in more of a predictive model in the future.

The future of banking involves “high tech and high touch” components and availability across all channels involving “front-end conversations. The strongest banking relationships involve advisory services. High touch is a bank’s ability to have an interaction rather than a transaction.