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Securing ‘Technology Early Adopters’ the key to success in the new banking environment

Source: Roy Morgan Research Single Source: March 2015 - February 2016 (n=15,052)

The rapid changes in how customers now deal with their banks, through mobiles, the internet and now the threat from fintech providers, pose a major challenge to existing banks. Roy Morgan Research has found that less than one in five (18.7%) Australians can be classified as ‘Technology Early Adopters’ but this is likely to be a critical segment to the success of banks in the new digital environment. Early Adopters are always first to purchase and use new technologies and generally set the trend for the broader market to follow, making it crucial for banks to understand how they are performing among this group. These findings are the latest from Roy Morgan’s Single Source survey of 50,000+ people pa.

Our research shows that there are in fact major differences in the proportion of each bank’s customers that belong to the Technology Early Adopter segment, which is likely to impact on their success rate in entering the new digital financial world.


The smaller banks lead in attracting Early Adopters

The six banks with the highest proportions of Early Adopters among their customer base are all the smaller or regional banks. Teachers Mutual Bank leads with 29.2% of its customers being from this group, which is 56% higher than the population average of 18.7%.

‘Technology Early Adopters’ by bank

Source: Roy Morgan Research Single Source: March 2015 - February 2016 (n=15,052)

The other two strongest performers are ING Direct (41% more likely than average) and Citibank (34% more likely).

Of the four major banks, Westpac (8% above average), followed by the ANZ and CBA (both 7% more likely than average) were the best performers. The NAB is 3% less likely than average.

Among the other major banks there are a number of below average performers, with Bendigo Bank well below average (33% below), Heritage Bank (23% below) and Bank SA (13% below).

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

“Although the smaller banks currently appear to be leading in attracting customers from the Technology Early Adopter segment, they are likely to face challenges from the better resourced big four and the new fintech disrupters who are likely to be more nimble and experienced at adapting quickly to customer needs, thus posing a potential problem for all banks.

“The success of all players in financial services will not only depend on their ability to attract early adopters but will depend ultimately on moving to the ‘mass market’ stage and ‘market maturity’, where the majority of the population have transitioned to this new era in banking. 

“Roy Morgan Research interviews approximately 2,000 Technology Early Adopters p.a. across a wide range of products and services, which enables anyone in the financial services sector to gain unique and customised insights into this key market segment.”

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%