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Consumer satisfaction with banks in December close to record high

Source: Roy Morgan Research Consumer Banking Satisfaction Report, December 2014, average 6-month sample n=25,549; Roy Morgan Single Source, July 2014-December 2014 (n=25,436).

The satisfaction level of personal banking customers in December was 82.6%, an increase of 1.1% points over the last 12 months and only 0.2% points below the 18-year record high recorded in November (82.8%). The competition among the big four banks for number one ranking remained close, with the CBA the leader in overall satisfaction on 81.6%. In terms of MFI (main financial institution) customer rankings, Westpac (83.3%) holds a narrow lead over CBA (83.2%) and NAB (83.0%).

These are the latest findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey of over 50,000 people pa.

“Other banks” are the pacesetters in satisfaction

The big four banks are now only separated by 2.3% points in their customer satisfaction ratings, compared to 9.2% points in 2005. The CBA has retained top spot with 81.6%, followed by Westpac (80.9%), NAB (80.3%) and ANZ (79.3%).

The real pacesetters in customer satisfaction are the “other banks” (ie those outside of the big four), which have retained a clear lead over the big four.

Consumer banking satisfaction


Source: Roy Morgan Research Consumer Banking Satisfaction Report, December 2014, average 6-month sample n=25,549.

The satisfaction level of “other banks” is currently 86.5%, up from 79.6% in 2005 (an increase of 6.9% points). Each of the big four showed an improvement in satisfaction over this period, with the biggest increase being the CBA (up 17.7% points).

Housing loan customers are a drag on satisfaction

Despite low housing loan interest rates, the housing loan customers of all the major banks (except Bendigo Bank) now have lower satisfaction ratings than other customers.

Satisfaction of home loan and other customers


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source, July 2014-December 2014 (n=25,436).

The highest home loan customer satisfaction rating among the major banks is Bendigo with 93.2%, well ahead of second placed Suncorp with 84.8%. The best of the big four for home loan customer satisfaction is Westpac (79.8%) and CBA leads among non-home loan customers with 82.1%. The ANZ has the lowest score for both groups.

Over the last 12 months, the improvement in the satisfaction rating for Westpac overall (+ 2.1% points) was driven by non-home loan customers (up 2.5% points). The ANZ’s improvement (up 1.6% points) was also due to non-home loan customers (up 2.7% points), whereas the NAB’s result was due to improvement among both groups. The small decline in satisfaction over the last 12 months for CBA was the result of a decline in satisfaction among their non-home loan customers.

Bendigo Bank customers the most likely to recommend their bank

Many banks are now focusing on increasing the proportion of their customers that would recommend them to others, ie become advocates.

Among the major banks, Bendigo customers are the most likely to recommend their bank, with 65.8% being highly likely to do so.

Personal customers likely to recommend their bank


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source, July 2014-December 2014 (n=25,436).

The best performer among the big four is CBA, with 51.6% of their customers being likely to recommend them; followed by NAB customers (48.7%), ANZ (46.7%) and Westpac (46.0%).

The satisfaction level among bank customers who indicate that they would be highly likely to recommend their bank is around 96% for all the major banks.

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

“All the major banks have shown big improvements in customer satisfaction over more than a decade, to the point where they are now competing closely for top position, but very little separates them. The challenge now is for the big four banks to catch up with the considerably better scores of the smaller banks.

“The flexibility of having many ways to more conveniently deal with banks has proven popular with customers and is likely to have contributed to increased satisfaction. Banks will be competing to become the leader in channel options and functionality as customers move away from branches which were the traditional strength of the big banks.

“The increasing focus of banks to create a customer base with a high level of advocacy and improved cross-sell will need to be generated by higher levels of very satisfied customers.”

For comments or more information please contact:
Suela Qemal, General Manager - Financial Services & Consulting
Office: +61 (3) 9629 6888

About Roy Morgan

Roy Morgan is the largest independent Australian research company, with offices throughout Australia, as well as in Indonesia, the United States and the United Kingdom. A full service research organisation specialising in omnibus and syndicated data, Roy Morgan has over 70 years’ experience in collecting objective, independent information on consumers.

Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

Percentage Estimate


25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%