Banks must improve their online services if they are to retain customers and boost sales, reasearch by Gallup Consulting and Adobe reveals.
"Banks can no longer assume that just having an online presence is enough it needs to be a satisfying, engaging experience, if they want to outperform their counterparts," said the report.
A successful online service must be much more than a copy of the paper-based services available at bank branches, the research concludes. Features such as online customer support and financial calculators are the best ways to increase the interaction between customers and the bank.
"Over the past 10 years, digital touchpoints have become extremely important components of the overall banking experience, and they promise to become even more important in the future," said the report.
"To fully engage customers, retail banks must actively manage their digital touchpoints by creating highly engaging websites and mobile banking offerings that function as a seamless part of a positive overall customer experience".
Mark Greenaway, director of finance practice at Adobe Systems, said, "Banks have the information and content you want but the important thing is how they represent it".
"Banks know they need to embrace new ways of communicating with customers. Asking customers to use an inferior online banking service will drive them away. Incorporating highly usable and interactive features, community-based applications, video, and integration with mobile services, will be a key differentiator for online banks," added Greenaway.
Improving the online experience for customers is a major business issue for banks as demand for online services increases.