Canadians less satisfied with banking apps in 2018, says J.D. Power study

TD bank

While nearly half of Canadian bank customers use mobile banking apps, the level of satisfaction with them has significantly decreased this year, according to a new study by J.D. Power.

J.D. Power’s 2018 Canada Banking App Satisfaction Study found that overall customer satisfaction with banking apps decreased 11 points (on a 1,000-point scale) this year as customers adopt digital banking methods instead.

The declining satisfaction may in part be attributed to a lack of complete customer understanding of what these apps can do. According to J.D. power, fewer than 68 percent of customers in Canada indicate a complete understanding of all of the features in their banking and credit card apps.

However, those who have used the apps 12 or more times per month demonstrated 61 point higher satisfaction scores than those who use the apps three or fewer times per month.

In particular, apps with a wide variety of features were more commonly used, such as multiple security login options, built-in chat functionality and account management functions.

To that end, J.D. Power notes that RBC Royal Bank’s mobile app ranked highest in overall satisfaction for a second consecutive year, with a score of 832. TD Canada Trust came in second with a score of 826, while CIBC placed third with 825 points.

“The large-scale push toward digital transformation by Canadian banks has had the desired effect of moving more customers onto more cost-effective digital channels but, in some cases, that transition is coming at the expense of customer satisfaction,” said Bob Neuhaus, senior director of financial services at J.D. Power, in a press statement.

“As mobile apps rapidly become the primary interaction channel for retail bank customers, it’s become critical for banks to make sure their customers completely understand all of the features their apps include and continue to add value through the digital channel.”

To gauge customer satisfaction, J.D. Power says it considered the following five factors (in order of importance): ease of navigation; appearance; clarity of information; range of services; and availability of key information. Responses were collected from 1,741 retail bank customers nationwide between April and May 2018.

The Canada Banking App Satisfaction Study can be viewed in full here.