Research reveals upsurge of interest among consumers online for alternative banking providers

Here’s why 

New search trend analysis from digital media agency, equimedia, has revealed that fintech banking providers are potentially missing out on a current upsurge in interest from consumers keen to switch bank accounts.

equimedia analysed Google search trends from the start of 2017 to date and found that searches for switching bank account have seen significant recent increases, while new fintech banking providers, such as Monzo and Atom Bank, are also seeing increased interest online. Monzo, in particular, has been averaging 110,000 searches per month, and Atom Bank has seen its searches increase recently to around 33,000 per month. Searches for switching current account and switching bank account are currently also on the rise.  

There has been significant encouragement from the Financial Conduct Authority for consumers to switch bank accounts since the switching service was streamlined four years ago. In that time, just over four million UK bank accounts have been transferred out of an estimated 65 million active current accounts – just over 6 per cent. However, the search trend analysis shows that this year, with online banking and new payment methods already transforming the finance sector, alternative fintech banking providers are gaining the interest of consumers looking to learn more about switching their accounts.

The search trend analysis bears this out – however, according to BACS data, while people may be searching for alternative banking providers, actually making people switch is a different matter. Despite high awareness of the switching service, 2017 data on switching has shown decreases year on year compared to the last two years.

Andrew Burgess, CEO and founder of equimedia comments: “It’s no surprise that consumers have shown a strong interest in these new innovative banking services, given changing consumer habits and online banking increasingly taking over as the primary channel to manage how we budget, save, shop and pay our bills. However, fintech banking providers need to seize the opportunity presented when people are searching for more information about their services online, through a smart digital strategy. If they don’t, as we have seen over the last four years, encouraging British account holders to switch banks can be a lengthy and potentially fruitless process.”

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