Ideas & musings about consumer behaviour

Australian mortgage industry phone sales performance: Spotlight on NAB

Global Reviews has been tracking performance of the Australian mortgage industry’s phone sales capabilities for over a decade. The most recent results show that NAB continues to lead the industry (having done so since late 2011) for the way it leads the customer through the buying process (Figure 1).

Figure 1. Top ten performersDirect - Mortgages - Figure

NAB is unique in its approach, in that it endeavours to find out as much about the customer as it can, and then uses this information to make a recommendation. NAB goes beyond simply providing all loan feature and pricing information, instead, tailoring the conversation to the customer’s individual situation.

As one of the Big Four, it is particularly impressive that NAB delivers such a personalised sales experience, outperforming its closest competitor by 9.5% against the benchmark.

Figure 2 plots the rates at which major banks (n=9) and smaller lenders (n=9) meet key sales criteria, against NAB mortgage sales and illustrates the extent to which NAB leads the industry. Its competitors rarely follow a structured and effective sales methodology. Rather, the mortgage industry as a whole adopts an ad hoc approach, and fails to meet best practice standards for phone sales.

Figure 2. Customer journeyDirect - Mortgages - NAB -

More often than not, companies pitch the ‘cheapest’ or ‘most popular’ product, which does little to convince the customer to commit to a buying decision. Instead, customers are encouraged to shop around for a better deal and encouraged to phone back. There is a lack of follow through, with the sales close performance reflecting that companies frequently miss the opportunity to convert the customer.

The cross-industry comparison (Figure 3) ranks various industries on how well they perform against the best-practice standards of the Sales Effectiveness benchmark. The health insurance industry convincingly outperforms other industries due to its ability to apply a structured and proactive sales methodology to inbound phone calls.

Figure 3. Cross-industry comparisonDirect - Mortgages - Figur

The mortgage industry, being in a similarly competitive environment, would improve conversion and retention by treating each phone enquiry as a potential new customer, and advising them on how the product represents a solution tailored to their needs. There is great potential for additional value to be provided to customers, beyond basic feature and pricing information (which is of course freely available online).

Find out more about Telephone Sales Benchmark

Go to the Australian Banking and Finance Industry Research page

For more information on this study and the information we currently have on your company and competitors, please contact:

Leonardo Arantes
Commercial Director (Contact Centre & Retail)
T: +61 3 9982 3418
M: +61 429 347 637


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