Woman using mobile phone

ABA survey: Online, mobile are most popular banking channels

Forty percent of Americans manage their bank accounts online more frequently than any other method, according to a recent survey conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of the American Bankers Association.  One in 4 consumers (26 percent) use their mobile devices most often to conduct their banking business, while 18 percent visit their bank’s branch the most frequently.

“Since the first smartphone changed the world 10 years ago, banks have leveraged mobile technology to take customer account access and convenience to the next level,” said Nessa Feddis, ABA’s senior vice president and deputy chief counsel for consumer protection and payments. “Banks are also integrating new technology in the design and functionality of their branches, which are still popular with many customers.”

When asked “Which of the following methods do you use most often to manage your bank account?” consumers responded as follows:

  • Internet (Laptop or PC) – 40 percent;
  • Mobile – 26 percent;
  • Bank Branches – 18 percent;
  • ATM – 7 percent;
  • Telephone – 4 percent;
  • Mail – 2 percent; and
  • Don’t know/No opinion – 3 percent

A breakdown of age demographics shows different preferences among different generations.  Nearly half (46 percent) of Americans aged 18-29 use mobile banking the most, while more than half (52 percent) of those aged 65 and older do most of their banking online.  Mobile and online banking are nearly tied as the most popular option among Americans aged 30-44 (36 percent vs. 35 percent, respectively).  Visiting a bank branch is the second most popular option with Americans aged 55 and older (27 percent), while only 11 percent of those aged 18-29 prefer to visit a branch to conduct transactions. [See infographic for a breakdown of top banking preferences by age.]

“As you might expect, millennials who have largely grown up with a smartphone in their hand are the most accustomed to using mobile technology to conduct transactions,” said Feddis. “While digital banking channels are many consumers’ first choice, most bank customers use a mix of all of these methods.”

About the Survey

This poll was conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of the American Bankers Association from August 24-26, 2017, among a national sample of 2,000 adults. The interviews were conducted online and the data were weighted to approximate a target sample of adults based on age, race/ethnicity, gender, educational attainment, and region. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

Click here for an infographic of the results.