Even as new technologies and mobile applications continue to streamline banking and payments, 88% of American adults feel they still need a physical branch location to go to for banking needs. Our recent CARAVAN survey also showed the reasons why they use a physical branch today: walk-up teller in lobby (68%), ATM (65%), drive-up window (51%), paper withdrawals/slips (39%), and bankers to discuss special options with (31%). When asked the importance of a physical bank branch five years from now, the sentiment remains consistent- with 84% saying a physical branch will still be important. While banking channels will continue to change or improve over time, the study also showed Americans foresee having similar banking needs five years from now as they do today (whether in a physical branch or online/mobile):
- 84% want access to a live person to discuss banking needs, 84% also expect to need the same five years from now
- 86% currently use online access for bill paying and functions such as transferring funds and 88% foresee doing the same in the future
- 68% use paper checks to make payments, and 62% foresee doing the same in five years
Regarding apps that allow banking and payment functions via your mobile or smartphone, 6 in 10 need it today while nearly 7 in 10 will need it in the future. The increase in mobile and app usage is not surprising as over 75% of Americans ages 18-44 say having mobile functionality is already important to today’s current banking environment. “As consumers continue to embrace digital technologies for simplifying daily tasks, the banking industry is being challenged to develop mobile banking apps that are faster, more secure and more contextual. Despite the continued growth of mobile use, the need for physical branches remains constant. Consumers want both options – the ability to interact on-the-go and on their own schedule via mobile and online offerings, as well as the option to be able to have face-to-face engagements for more complex issues such as investments and mortgages. The future of banking lies in the right mix – branches and technology – enabling a true omnichannel experience,” stated Marina Stein, Senior Research Analyst for ORC International. View our Future of Banking Infographic.