Banks fail to build customer loyalty

Friday, May 23, 2014 08:00

People conduct transactions at a branch of Ocean Bank in Ha Noi. A survey has revealed poor customer loyalty towards retail banks, with a majority of customers saying they would be willing to close their existing accounts to join a different bank. — VNS Photo Truong Vi

HA NOI (Biz Hub) — Vietnamese customers are not loyal to retail banks, as 65–77 per cent of surveyed people were ready to close their banking accounts and change to another bank.

The statement was announced in a latest study on Global Consumer Banking Survey conducted by tax, auditing and finance consulting firm, EY, in Ha Noi yesterday. This year's survey includes responses from 32,600 retail banking customers across 43 countries, with responses from 800 people in Viet Nam.

The survey revealed that Viet Nam had the highest percentage of customers willing to change their banks in the Asian Pacific region while the common rate globally was around 50 per cent, especially 10–20 per cent in Australia and Japan.

Talking about the less loyalty of Vietnamese customers, Keith Pogson, managing partner of EY's Financial Services—Asia Pacific region, claimed that the reason was there were too many banks in Viet Nam.

He noted that Australia and Japan, for example, which have simple banking system, have 3–4 large banks, thus leaving customers with little choice. The number of banks in Viet Nam is 40, apart from several financial companies and similar providers.

Douglas J. Hamilton, managing director of EY's Finance and Banking Service Sector, agreed, adding that banks in other countries provide a range of products from pension, credit, savings to mortgage or insurance.

"This is the reason that people in those countries do not change their banks, as they will also have to change all of the services," he noted.

In Viet Nam, products provided by retail banks are simple and banks have mainly competed with each other on deposits.

Another factor was the quality of service of Vietnamese banks. The EY's survey also revealed that one-half of Vietnamese customers closed their accounts or left their banks due to issues of communication and experience in banking services.

Some customers stated that the quality of ATM and services at banks are not in line with the current fees.

The survey also revealed that the trust of Vietnamese customers on retail banks last year was lower than common rate in the world as well as in the region.

Keith noted that the reason was that the banking system was facing challenges. Especially, the issue of bad debts.

In addition, banking system using-high tech foundation, such as mobile banking, in Viet Nam has not been strongly developed. — VNS

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