Bank customers do their banking through mobile apps more often than any other method, according to new survey by the American Bankers Association (ABA)
The survey that sampled 2,201 adults found that bank customers preferred mobile apps before and after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Before Covid-19, 33% of bank customers used apps on phones or other mobile devices as their primary option to manage their bank account, while 24% used online banking the most via laptop or PC and 21% most often carried out their transactions in person at a bank branch.
During the pandemic, the frequency of use of digital channels increased further (44% mobile apps, 26% online) while branch banking services fell to 10%.
Rob Morgan, senior vice president of innovation strategy at ABA, said: “Digital banking was on the rise long before COVID-19, but the growth in the use of mobile apps has accelerated as the pandemic has made in-person banking more difficult.
“Today’s banking apps are extremely sophisticated, and this survey shows that many consumers who try them are quickly making mobile their banking method of choice. “
More than half of Gen Z, Gen Y, and Gen X now most often use mobile banking apps. All three groups used this method most immediately before the pandemic.
The survey found that baby boomers used online banking services the most, 34% before the pandemic and 38% during the pandemic. The second most common method used by baby boomers before was to visit a bank branch (28%), but it fell to third place (17%) after mobile apps (29%) after the arrival of Covid-19.
During the pandemic, branch visits declined by at least eight percentage points among all generations.
In a recent opinion piece written for Banking Exchange, Carol Leaman, President and CEO of Axonify, the future of retail banking will be determined by consumer behavior, with the digital switchover still in full swing.
A study by Self Financial, a fintech specializing in the underbanked population, suggests that branches could disappear by 2034.
However, research from banking software specialist Temenos reveals that banking customers may want a combined human-digital service balance. Research has found that while customers want banks to help them manage their financial lives and expect more from their digital banking services, access to people remains a priority.