New research shows that consumer confidence remains high for financial services, despite the economic situation.
Consumer Confidence Remains High
Toluna undertook a quarterly study looking at key financial services issues in the UK and their consumers. In total, they surveyed 1,137 respondents across August 2020. The research showed that confidence in the financial services sector remains stable in the UK. This is in spite of the UK’s entrance into the worst recession ever recorded. Consumer confidence has remained high for banks, investments and credit card providers with an increased demand for digital financial services. 68% of respondents said that their confidence in financial services providers has remained the same since before the Covid pandemic.
Lack of Savings
Despite consumer confidence being high, the research highlighted a lack of savings. Although over half of those surveyed said they save regularly (56%), 22% of those aged 35-54 do not have a financial safety net. Another group feeling that they lack a safety net are those whose consumer confidence has decreased in the past 12 months. Additionally, those who have failed to pay a bill or a loan in 3 of the last 6 months were the most likely to claim they have no safety net.
Increased Sustainability Concerns
Savers are seemingly more concerned about sustainability of business models when investing finances. Those aged between 18 and 34 demand more responsible and ethical products and services from organisations. Similarly, 69% of 18-34 year olds are interested in the environmental and societal impact of their future investments. This is still present in the over 55 age group but to a lesser extent (47%).
Shift to Digital
The survey showed that there is a wide scale shift over to digital banking, across all age groups. 75% of respondents are already using online banking, 44% mobile apps, 13% virtual payment cards and 8% video chats with financial services companies. The younger generation is more likely to adopt digital banking; for example, 65% of 18-34 year olds are using mobile banking compared to 23% of those aged 55 and over. The over-55 year olds still show a preference for visiting their local branch and speaking to someone face to face. Although the consumer confidence for digital banking is there, the older generation are more risk-averse. Only 21% of the over 55 age group would prefer to use mobile apps and 58% listed ‘in person at a branch’ as their preferred banking method.
Michael Worledge, Finance Sector Head, Toluna said: “Unlike in the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008, the financial services industry currently has much higher levels of confidence from the public and is therefore in a better position to provide support.