People prefer to communicate with their banks in person at a branch, and not via email, according to a new survey from Mintel Comperemedia.
Two in three adults (65%) say they prefer to get up close and personal at a bank branch to communicate, while three in seven (43%) like the phone for its real-person, real-time qualities. Only 44% of survey respondents say they like logging on to a bank's secure Web site, while just one-third (34%) choose email as a preferred method of bank communication.
"When it comes down to it, people still crave personal contact when communicating with banks," said Susan Wolfe, VP of financial services at Mintel Comperemedia, in a statement. "Talking in person or over the phone brings on feelings of familiarity and confidence, which are especially important to consumers in light of the financial crisis."
However, banks shouldn't get rid of their Web sites and stop emailing altogether. Young adults are likely to prefer online and email communications when they want to contact their banks. Over half of Echo Boomers and Gen Xers (52% each) say they like reaching their bank through a secure Web site.
Mail, email and in-person were nearly tied when the Chicago-based Mintel asked survey respondents how they prefer their banks to contact them.
"Though people have clear preferences for how they like to contact their banks, they aren't as opinionated about how their banks contact them," Wolfe says. "Banks need to be mindful that every customer has different communication preferences, so they should offer multiple points of contact."