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Business satisfaction with banks reaches new high – but big four lag behind smaller banks

Source: Roy Morgan Research Business Banking Satisfaction Report, November 2014. Average 6 month sample n=6,274; Roy Morgan Research Consumer Banking Satisfaction Report November 2014, average 6 month sample n=25,709. Source: Roy Morgan Research Business Single Source, 6 months to November 2014 (n=4,546). Thumbnail image: copyright Mattinbgn (Wikimedia Commons)

The satisfaction level of Australian business banking customers has reached its highest level since the survey began four years ago and is now 69.6%, up from 61.4% in 2010. The big four banks remain below average with satisfaction of 67.6%, compared to other banks with 72.2%. Of the big four, Westpac maintained top position in November with 71.6%, followed by NAB on 69.6%.

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Business Single Source survey of around 12,000 interviews with business decision makers, and the Roy Morgan Single Source Survey of over 50,000 people p.a.

Business customer satisfaction well below consumers

Despite the improvement in satisfaction over the last four years among banks’ business customers, they remain well below the satisfaction level of personal customers. The satisfaction with banks among personal customers is currently 82.8% (up by 6.5% points from 2010), considerably higher than the 69.6% level for business customers (up 8.2% points).

Business and Consumer Banking Satisfaction

banking-satisfaction-chart

Source: Roy Morgan Research Business Banking Satisfaction Report, November 2014. Average 6 month sample n=6,274; Roy Morgan Research Consumer Banking Satisfaction Report November 2014, average 6 month sample n=25,709.

Banks other than the big four are currently the clear leaders in satisfaction for both consumers (86.6%) and businesses (72.2%). For the last four years the smaller banks have maintained a big lead in satisfaction over the big four among consumers but the gap has generally been much closer among business customers.

Westpac maintains leadership

Westpac business customers have generally had the highest satisfaction levels of the big four banks over the last three years and currently  lead with 71.6%, followed by NAB (69.6%), CBA (66.2%) and ANZ (62.3%). It is worth noting that all four of the big banks are below the average satisfaction level of the smaller banks.

Business Banking Satisfaction: Big Four Banks

business-banking-sat

Source: Roy Morgan Research Business Banking Satisfaction Report, November 2014. Average 6 month sample n=6,274

Westpac also showed the greatest improvement of the big four banks over the last four years increasing satisfaction among its business customers by 9.7% points (61.9% to 71.6%). The other three majors also showed gains, with NAB up 8.8% points, ANZ up 4.4% points and CBA up 4.3% points.

Business customers not very likely to recommend their bank

Generally less than half of most banks’ business customers could be regarded as being very likely to recommend their bank to others. This relatively low level of advocacy is the result of their low satisfaction levels.

Business customers likely to recommend their bank

all-banks-sat

Source: Roy Morgan Research Business Single Source, 6 months to November 2014 (n=4,546).

The best performer among the big four banks is Westpac, with 51.0% of their business customers being very likely to recommend their bank to others. They are well ahead of NAB (42.9%), ANZ (42.0%) and CBA (41.4%). The clear leader of the major banks is Bendigo Bank with 74.3% of their customers likely to recommend it to others.

Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director, Roy Morgan Research says:

“Banks have obviously been making a concerted effort to improve customer satisfaction over a number of years, resulting in considerable gains in satisfaction among both business and personal customers. A major issue now is how to improve the satisfaction levels among business customers and close the gap with personal customers. There is a strong connection between the personal and business banks among small business operators and as such a poor performance in one segment is likely to impact on the other segment’s result.

“The big four banks have generally focused on how they rate against each other but this analysis shows the need for more focus on how they compare with the other banks. The market leaders in satisfaction among both consumers and businesses are the banks outside of the big four and they should become the yardstick by which the majors measure themselves.

“With a generally increased focus by banks on retaining and growing business through recommendation or advocacy, it is essential they also focus on customers being ‘very satisfied’, not just ‘fairly satisfied’. Increased satisfaction levels among both business and personal customers will then result in more recommendations by these satisfied customers.”

For comments or more information please contact:
Norman Morris, Industry Communications Director
Office: +61 (03) 9224 5172
Norman.Morris@roymorgan.com