Why digital access is key to customer satisfaction

Lockdown forced millions to take a virtual crash course in digital access. With face-to-face interactions significantly reduced, ‘digital by default’ was imposed on businesses and customers alike. 

But does this default to digital meet customer expectations? We asked 5,000 consumers across the US, UK, France, Germany, and the Netherlands to find out.

Security and a superior digital experience are the No. 1 priority

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated an already established trend — that customers are defaulting to online services. 1 in 2 feel more comfortable than they did before the pandemic, and 90% of your customers now feel comfortable accessing services online.

This is reflected in the fact that consumers want to perform a range of account actions online. In fact, 1 in 2 would choose to open a bank account online as opposed to in person. And 77% would feel satisfied if banks allowed them to access services 100% digitally. 

Customers also want access to banking, fast. 65% want to open a bank account in less than ten minutes. Similarly, 48% want to approve a banking transaction in three minutes or less. 

All this points to a shift in customer attitudes. Trust used to be associated with size and physical presence. Now, it’s more associated with security and a slick digital experience. Customers value these traits in a brand, more than a physical branch presence.

Businesses are still failing to meet customer expectations

But not everyone feels comfortable online. It’s unlikely that 100% of customers will ever feel comfortable online, but businesses should still take note of the reasons why. For the 1 in 10 that don’t feel comfortable, their primary concerns are about security and convenience. The majority worry that someone might steal their personal information and the rest said they find online inconvenient compared to making in-branch transactions.

What’s more concerning is the fact that there’s a disconnect between what customers want and what businesses are offering them in reality. 

Banks and other businesses more broadly are falling short in meeting customer expectations when it comes to digital access. Yes, customers are comfortable transacting online, and they want digital access, but 70% of those surveyed were unable to access digital services in the last 12 months because of a lack of digital processes. Banking and financial services were at the top of this list, with 36% of people unable to access them.

Identity — the solution to re-establishing trust online?

Turns out, businesses have similar concerns to their customers. Executive research found that 44% are concerned with time to onboard. They also have concerns about security, predominantly how to prevent fraud. 27% worry about balancing the cost of fraud versus the cost of preventing it.

An efficient digital process centers around knowing your customers, and building trust online. Despite this, only 41% of executives have an active identity initiative. How can a business build trust online without first establishing a user’s identity?

But some ways of building assurance in a customer’s identity are stronger than others. Plus, it has to work for your customers, as well as on the business side. 

When it comes to proving identity, consumers are very receptive to methods that use a combination of Document and Biometric verification. 91% of consumers who verified their identity by submitting a photo of their identity document during the pandemic, would like to use this option again. While 8 in 10 find biometrics both convenient AND secure. 

A digital identity solution that addresses concerns around security, efficiency and ease can help businesses meet customer expectations, and bring them up to speed with the constantly-evolving trends toward digital by default.

Take a look at our Digital by Default report to get more customer insights.

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