Digital banking: a majority of SMEs are dissatisfied with the offer

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Only around 40% of SMEs are satisfied with their banks’ digital offerings. In addition to better basic digital functions, they would like to see an optimized user experience. This is what reveals a market study carried out by CREALOGIX in Switzerland, Germany and the United Kingdom.

The results of the study highlight the current challenges facing banks in their cooperation with SMEs. A total of 466 SMEs and 157 banks were surveyed between April and May 2021. The low level of satisfaction is a red flag for banks, as the study found that the overall level of satisfaction of SMEs was based on digital services of their banks. provided. Four out of ten SMEs surveyed are satisfied with their bank’s digital offer. Just under 80% would like to see improved digital banking functionality and more digital touchpoints with their bank. The study shows that, from the point of view of SMEs, digital solutions are part of the basic offerings they expect from their banks.

Yannick Decaumont, Vice-President Group Product Management at CREALOGIX, declares:

“In order not to lose contact with new competitors such as neobanks, banks must now adapt to the requirements of their customers. The study shows that there is a significant gap between customer needs and the strategic direction of banks.

In fact, 70% of the SMEs surveyed stress the importance of digital communication channels. By contrast, as far as banks are concerned, only around 40% plan to set up such channels.

Optimization potential for conversational banking

The demands on banks depend on the size of each SME – larger companies tend to be more satisfied. Overall, satisfaction is at its lowest when it comes to onboarding and user experience. In general, SMEs want more functionalities that go beyond the traditional banking profession, for example, the integration of digital accounting software, expense and invoice management, and invoicing. Large banks are sometimes able to offer these services themselves, while smaller banks tend to rely on integrated ecosystem offerings from third-party providers. This allows banks to offer a wide range of additional services on one platform.

There is always an opportunity for banks to avoid losing their SME customers to digital neobanks. However, this implies having to adapt to the needs of this customer segment. For many years, CREALOGIX has been developing products that meet these requirements in a simple way. According to the study, the greatest potential for optimization lies in the digital customer experience. Conversational banking solutions, which combine artificial intelligence and human interaction, can dramatically improve this experience. The integration of chatbots or virtual video advice into existing online banking are two examples of solutions that CREALOGIX has already successfully implemented for some of its clients.

You can request the 2021 SME Bank Report for free here (only available in English).


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