Ideas & musings about consumer behaviour

Search terms used by UK consumers when looking for a Current Account or a Credit Card online

Author: Marie Sheehan

Global Reviews’ research in to current account and credit card providers online

In 2014 we ran the following programmes of study:
Digital Sales Effectiveness (DSE): This study measures how effective Banks are at converting customers online. We ran the DSE programme twice in 2014 for Credit Cards (January & July) and Current Accounts (March & September).

Digital Marketing Effectiveness (DME): This study measures how effective Banks are at attracting customers online. We ran the DME programme once in 2014 for Credit Cards (August) and twice for Current Accounts (January & July)

Initial brand preference
As part of our research, we asked ‘in market’ consumers if they had a brand preference – a pre convinced idea of who they might choose for a particular financial services product. Across the industry 69% of consumers have an initial preference for a brand before researching. However when we examined the research findings at the individual financial services products, we found that those preferences are in fact widely spread.

13% of consumers before they did any searching and research into finding a current account said that they would probably choose Santander, 11% for Lloyds and 11% for Barclays. The choice is very widespread – consumers listed over twenty brands as their initial preference.

For credit cards there is a slightly different mix, with Tesco Bank (8%) coming in as the most initially preferred brand.

Although there is a lot of brand preference, the market is very fragmented and at this point there is no overall winner.

Fig 1: Unprompted initial brand preference for Current Account and Credit Card providers Source:  Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

Fig 1: Unprompted initial brand preference for Current Account and Credit Card providers
Source: Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

 

What do consumers search for?
We then asked the ‘in market’ consumers to do some research online and find a product that meets their needs.

Unsurprisingly 90% of consumers begin their journey on a search engine. What is interesting however is, what they actually search for – the key words and terminology.

For current accounts the leading search key word is “Santander”, which echoes Santander being the most initially preferred brand. This is followed by the search term “current accounts” and then three more brands.

Fig 2: Keywords and search terms used when searching for a Current Account provider Source:  Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

Fig 2: Keywords and search terms used when searching for a Current Account provider
Source: Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

 

For credit cards the most used search terminology was “credit cards”. Apart from “Barclaycard” brands did not feature when consumers were searching for a credit card online to best suit their needs.

This means that it’s a far more open market when it comes to credit cards. Consumers are much more open to the deals on offer and are less brand -led than consumers looking to open a current account.

Fig 3: Keywords and search terms used when searching for a Credit Card provider Source:  Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

Fig 3: Keywords and search terms used when searching for a Credit Card provider
Source: Global Reviews Digital Marketing Effectiveness studies in to Current Account and Credit Card providers 2014

 

If you would like to know more, please contact us.

Research Calendar 2015
Credit Cards: January and July
Savings: February and August
Mortgages: April and October
Current Accounts: April and October
Personal Loans: April

International Best Practice
To find out more about what best practice looks like and those who are achieving it view our webinar recorded on January 29th: Ireland & UK Digital Banking in 2014 – A Review of the Year.

Banking webinar

 

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