New research has found that UK consumers are embracing digital and online banking more than their EU counterparts.
A study commissioned by CRIF surveyed bank customers in France, the Czech Republic, Italy, Germany, Slovakia and the United Kingdom, to better understand their attitudes towards financial services.
The data revealed that UK consumers are almost twice as likely as other Europeans to request financial products and services online, including via online chat or video call features (59% vs. 33%).
In Europe, more than half of consumers still prefer to apply for new financial products, including current accounts, credit cards or loans, at a physical bank, according to the research.
However, in the UK, that number is significantly lower, with only around 23% saying they prefer in-person banking to online banking.
Open banking in the UK has seen a marked increase in recent years, with research from June this year establishing that the number of open banking customers had reached 6 million users.
The data revealed that open bank payments are growing 500% year over year. In May 2022, businesses and consumers made 5 million open bank payments.
Sara Costantini, CRIF Regional Director for UK and Ireland, said: “In a digitally driven world, the way we go about our daily lives has changed. And nowhere more than in banking and financial services.
“Our research shows that the UK is leading the way in Europe when it comes to adopting digital and online methods, but we can still do more to use digital technologies to help more UK consumers manage their finances.
“While some are reluctant to share data because they worry about fraud and security, we must work to allay those fears. Technologies such as open banking are not only safe, but can lay the groundwork increased financial support during the current economic crisis.
Despite the increase in the use of digital banking services, Costantini noted that providers need to do more to educate their customers about the benefits of online banking and other digital forms.
This would not only help them during the cost-of-living crisis, but also drive well-being and financial inclusion on a large scale, she said.
With the cost of living now a real concern for people in the UK and finances strained, the research has suggested several ways banks can provide better services to consumers.
More than two-thirds of UK consumers fear that sharing financial data will make them more vulnerable to fraud. This underscored the need to educate and reassure customers that innovations such as open banking have high security standards and offer a range of benefits to consumers.
Around a third of people in the UK said they would be willing to share more financial information if it helped providers better assess their financial situation and improve their ability to borrow (35%) or increase their limit of credit (31%), despite concerns. .
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