Digital technology has made the need for paper banking statements an anachronism for many consumers. But are banking customers comfortable dispensing with their hardcopy statements? Research firm Ipsos MORI polled internet users in Great Britain, the US, France and Germany in October 2013 on behalf of Chameleon PR to find out their preferences regarding bank statements.
The survey found that there was no clear uniformity among the countries in terms of customer preference for online or printed statements. While online-only statements were more popular than any other form of statement in Great Britain and the US, consumers in France favored getting their statements in printed paper form. Those in Germany preferred a mixture of online and paper.
The reticence of users in France and Germany to give themselves over to paperless statements in larger numbers may be due to heightened concerns related to security in those countries.
However, banking customers from all four countries were not resistant to checking their online bank statements with relatively high frequency. In France, 41% went online to keep tabs on their statements several times a week, followed by Germany and the US, both at 37%, and then Great Britain (35%). Users in all of these countries seem wedded to the convenience that digital channels offer them.
Users in Germany showed a particular fondness for using mobile devices to check their statements frequently. The survey found that 53% of respondents from the country checked their mobile bank statement several times a week. In comparison, 44% of customers in the US used mobile statements several times a week, followed by France (30%) and Great Britain (27%).
While security concerns may be keeping some consumers from accessing banking information online, it seems that convenience outweighs those worries among most customers.
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