Future Trends in Credit Card Customer Satisfaction

According to our 2012 U.S. Credit Card Satisfaction Study released late last week, the competitive environment is stabilizing and credit card issuers are making substantial strides in improving areas that were previously problematic—particularly communication and problem resolution.  So, what comes next? How are customer expectations changing, and what are the implications for issuers? Where should issuers focus their efforts in the future?

1.  Digital channels and self-service

The shift to online use and away from phone and mail continues. Customers are performing more routine activities online, such as reward-related activities, and are contacting call centers less often with questions or requests and are beginning to seek answers via self-serve channels, such as online. In fact, data from our 2012 Credit Card Satisfaction Study indicates that customers are attempting to resolve problems on their own and are moving away from contacting the call center for simple problems, but contacting the call center to deal with more complex issues.

 

2012 J.D. Power and Associates U.S. Credit Card Custom Satisfaction Study©.  The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

In addition, 7% of customers indicate using a mobile device to interact with their credit card issuer, and 5% have used social media for service transactions.  Another emerging trend related to the increased use of digital channels for routine transactions and greater reliance on self-service tools is that the issues about which customers contact the call center are becoming increasingly complex. This has important implications for the role of the call center and the requirements for call center representatives.

THE POINT:  Not only will issuers need to continue to commit resources to online as the workhorse for routine transactions, but they will also need to simultaneously invest in and develop these emerging online channels since customers prefer this method of communication above all others.  Knowledgeable employees that are able handle complex problems are a necessity.

2.  Rewards and Communication

An examination of recent success in the market, as defined by the highest-performing issuers, American Express and Discover Card, and the most improved issuers, Chase and Barclaycard, shows that two drivers of advantage in the past—rewards programs and customer communications—will continue to provide an expanding competitive edge in the future. Continue reading ›

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Role of Social Media in Growing Bank Revenues

Guest Blog Post by:  EMI Strategic Marketing

At last month’s Financial Services Marketing Symposium, a question posted by Tim Spence of Oliver Wyman to kick off the conference reflected an issue on attendees’ minds: where does the financial services industry find revenue growth? This is top of mind in the industry, as the lower loan-loss provisions, which boosted bank profitability in 2011, are expected to tail off in 2012, so financial institutions are now looking to the revenue side of the ledger to maintain and grow profits.

According to the top 25 banks’ recent forecasts, all 25 plan to increase revenue by growing their market share – which means that some of these institutions will fail do to so.

In an environment characterized by increased competitive intensity, technological advances and renewed focus on customer relationship optimization, banks are investing in a range of new service and sales channels, with social media prominent among these emerging channels. A survey of the FSM conference audience revealed that 67% of attendees’ banks have a presence on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. A recent report by FIS Global shows that many top banks have a social media presence on these three main social media platforms:

What was notable about the social media discourse at the conference is that none of the speakers explained how participation in social media channels improves revenue for their organization:

» Paul Kadin of Citibank focused on the fact that Citibank’s social media presence has helped to improve its Net Promoter Scores

» Julie Berkun Fajgenbaum of American Express OPEN discussed the organization’s social media goal: active participation by message recipients

» Tim Collins of Wells Fargo emphasized that social media is not the right channel for pushing products; rather, it is a forum for authentic, relevant messages to customers

Continue reading ›

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