Digital banking transactions reach £1bn in UK

British people are making online and mobile banking transactions worth near £1bn a day

British people are making online and mobile banking transactions worth almost £1bn a day, according to research from the British Bankers Association (BBA).

The Way We Bank No, It’s in Your Hands report, put together by the BBA and Ernst & Young, revealed that just 16% of consumers have never used online or mobile banking.

Transactions worth £6.4bn a week are made using the mobile and online channels in the UK, which is an increase on £5.8bn in the same study last year. On average of over 15,000 people in 2014 downloaded banking apps every day and online banking services get about 7 million logins on a typical day.

The use of contactless payments is also surging with £6.1m expected to be spent every week this way in 2014 compared to £3.2m in 2013.

The study found that only 10% of RBS and Natwest transactions will be made in branches this year, compared with 25% in 2014. Despite the big increases in transactions being made online, banks are still committed to a high street presence – 2,274 bank branches have been refurbished in the past two years. Branches will focus on services beyond transactions.

Anthony Browne, CEO of the BBA, said the report shows the British public are “enthusiastically” embracing mobile banking, contactless cards and a range of other consumer-friendly banking technologies. “The way we bank now has made it a lot easier for us to keep track of our finances, with far more options about how we spend our money and talk to our bank,” he said. 

“This study shows banks will continue to compete against one another to offer customers innovative technology to win your custom. It’s a revolution putting more power in your hands.”

The benefits of a digital presence go beyond transactions with customers using online and mobile to manage their accounts and communicate with banks. For example, RBS responded to 90,000 in 2013 and Natwide Building Society replied to 190,000 emails.

In the report, Ross McEwan, CEO at RBS Group, described how the banks mobile app is busier than any branch. “Do you know which is out busiest branch in the UK? It’s our mobile app on the 7:15 to Paddington.”

Steven Roberts, head of strategic transformation at Barclays, said branches will become more customer friendly. “By becoming more focused on the customer, branches are becoming less like a dental surgery, where people rush to be in and out in the minimum time.”

According to Tony Prestedge, COO at Nationwide Building Society: “Social media is rapidly becoming the channel of choice for people contacting us – and Twitter is particularly popular."

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