Thursday, June 9, 2011

Top trends in retail online banking

Posted by Mark Brousseau

Bank customers have started to demand that their banks’ online offerings keep up with the times, according to new research from Celent, LLC. And for good reason: the online banking space has stagnated for far too long, the research and advisory firm contends.

The evolution of the Internet has provided consumers with rich and interactive experiences online. Unfortunately, the banking industry has not kept pace with the evolution of the Internet, and customers have started to demand that their banks keep up with the times. For the most part, financial institutions recognize their online shortcomings.

Celent says the question is: Why haven’t they acted on them, what can they do about it, and how can they keep up with ever-increasing customer demands? These questions become even more difficult to answer because financial institutions have just started to emerge from the impact of the financial crisis and are under extreme pressure to run sustainable businesses in the wake of increased regulatory pressures.

The good news is that next-generation online banking is on its way, according to Celent research. Some of these are in full swing; others are just emerging or expected to impact the space within the next three to five years.

"Online banking isn’t an alternative channel any more. It’s a mainstream channel," says Jacob Jegher, senior analyst with Celent’s Banking group. "This channel, however, requires a lot of attention. If banks don’t act swiftly, they risk critical customer relationships and revenue. It’s important that banks harness technology but don’t use it as their best foot forward."

What do you think?

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