October 04, 2010

Results of an American Bankers Association survey released late last week show 36 percent of bank customers prefer online banking over any other channel.

It was the second consecutive year in which online banking beat out other channels, while branch visits came in second with 25 percent of consumers indicating they still preferred to bank in person. The survey, conducted by market research firm Ipsos-Public Affairs, polled 1,000 consumers.

“Clearly, online banking has fully penetrated the market,” said Nessa Feddis, ABA vice president, senior counsel and retail banking expert. “Online banking is the future of banking as more Generation Y-ers enter the marketplace. This means the industry will need to continue investing in technology that supports online banking because consumers see it as quick, convenient, accurate and safe.”

Banking by ATM was preferred by 15 percent of those surveyed, while mobile banking was the choice of only 3 percent of those surveyed.

The general demographic of those surveyed who preferred Internet banking were adults under 55 years of age with an income greater than $75,000.

“Online banking may be the most preferred method of banking but banks remain committed to providing multiple choices to serve all consumers," Feddis said. "Increasing competitive focus means bank customers will continue to have the choice between branches, ATMs, telephone, cell phone, or the Internet to conduct their transactions – whichever they find most convenient for them."