July 2022 UK Legacy Banks App Performance Snapshot

This month’s UK Legacy banking app snapshot is a great one, with a dramatic transformation for HSBC to get to the bottom of - join us as we investigate what happened to cause this turnaround.

HSBC was at the very bottom performer in the UK Legacy Banks segment and has been the underperformer for some time. Our viewers will recall, HSBC’s underperformance was our focus just last month. It is with great interest that we investigate one of the biggest movements we’ve seen in app scores to date.

HSBC is keeping mum, but we’ve got the tools to uncover their secrets.

If you joined us for previous UK Legacy Bank Snapshots, you would recall that one of the things we have seen overtime has been a dramatic decline for HSBC which had them sitting just shy of 3.5 this time last year, dropping down as low as they could go at 1.5 in the first half of 2022. Then in dramatic fashion we now see a sharp upswing from 2 to a 4, which is a huge leap in a short space in time and has brought HSBC up to a better, albeit an average-good score, in line with the other UK Legacy Banks.

To answer the burning question, “what has happened?”, Tony brings our attention to the two most recent app updates. Whatever improvements they’ve made, HSBC appears to be holding their cards close to their chest, not revealing anything more than some standard enhancements and nothing out of the ordinary to have had such a drastic impact. Whatever it is, it’s not being broadcast by HSBC.

With HSBC not giving us any clues, we use Touchpoint Group’s Ipiphany software platform to drill down deeper behind the scenes and hear it from the people, through HSBC customer feedback. Using the Ipiphany comparison tool, Tony reveals what has been taking place in the time between the two app updates, and it’s here that Tony pinpoints the exact date of when we start seeing the change taking place.

The Ipiphany software very clearly depicts the dramatic change for the better across all areas of Functionality, Security, Authentication and Useability. Tony points out that this indicates the changes have all been back-end. At long last HSBC customers can do the things on the app that they expect to be able to do, and as they previously couldn’t do the very basic things on the app, this will come as a very welcome change by HSBC’s customers.

Have HSBC’s customers been underserved for so long they’re just grateful for the bare minimum, or have these back-end improvements had a much-needed positive impact on churn? Watch the video to find out.

Engaged Customer Score Rankings as at July 2022

If you would like a personalised look at your bank's app performance? Contact Touchpoint Group today for a specific insights session for your business.

Full Transcript

00:00:00 Glenn: Welcome back to another Banking App Video Insights Session and looking at the UK, there's really only one story that we want to focus on right now. And that is the dramatic transformation around HSBC and what's happened over the last five or six weeks, because Tony Patrick, they were at the bottom of the heap and something has happened because they have had a dramatic increase in Engaged Customer Score.

So, I'm going to hand it over to you and you can fill us in and see what you can uncover my friend.

00:00:40 Tony: Great. Thanks, Glenn. Yeah, some dramatic changes for HSBC UK. Today we'll cover off the UK Banks in here these major ones: Lloyds, Barclays, NatWest Nationwide, Santander and, of course, HSBC. I'll just jump in and show you what we're talking about in this this scoring.

One of the things we've seen across time is this dramatic decline for HSBC it was sitting just below 3.5 and it's moved across time to be bumping around 1.5. We saw some a bit of movement in May and June but, this is dramatic. It's gone from about a 2 up until a 4. Now, this is one of the biggest movements I think I've ever seen in app scoring over the past five years. It's moved up, it hasn't actually taken the lead but, it's actually moved up in line with some of the others sitting in here. It's a very interesting move so, what has happened inside there?

What we can do is first of all have a look at this. We're looking at here is actually what versions, what changes have actually happened in the app. We can see that version 3.22 actually was launched the 23rd of June and we started seeing people giving feedback on that from about the last three days of last month. So, it didn't have an impact on last month at all. But, pretty much all of July we're actually seeing information coming through on this and also the subsequent 3.23.2 but, that is actually happening that's only sort of happened in the last week of July so most of this is around 3.22. But, you see that there's not nothing in there about a major sort of update in sort of Security or Reliability happening there. There's something happening behind the scenes that hasn't been sort of advertised to the public in here.

Okay let's have a quick look at what we're seeing here. If you look to the left of that drop, we're seeing what was happening previously that now we're showing there's 3.2.0 it's similar to 3.22.1 version pretty much at an average of 1.5. When we hit version 3.22 we suddenly get an average score of around 4 and above. And that's continued, this is week on week. We can see the week of the change was the 27th of June. That week commencing 27th of June when that launch happened. We can also see at the end here, it's only early days but, in the past week we're starting to get feedback on 3.23.2 that version for HSBC and that's also positive. So, they aren't suddenly jumping back. So, positive news for HSBC. But, what's happened here?

Well, let's have a quick look at what we can see. One of the outcomes of what's happened for HSBC is previously at version 3.21 we're getting about more than half of customers talking about reliability issues so problems with the app in terms of Reliability. But now, it's around 13%. Still some problems in there but, it's a dramatic drop and that's the same across all of these areas around Functionality Security and Authentication and Usability. What's happened here, is not necessarily there's been no major change in the actual UI and feel of the app. This to me looks like a functional back-end change that's actually allowed people to actually use the features they want to use and which they couldn't do before, and so what we can do to jump in and see that, is have a look at a game looking at version 3.21 versus 3.22 and this is just having a look inside that area of Reliability. Technical issues have dropped dramatically, crashes have come down from about 1 in 4 customers talking about a crash in June whereas now it's 1 in 20. It's a massive decline there and also the App Not Working has dropped a lot and Bugs have actually dropped by more than half. So, this is a major change for them and it's actually a major improvement.
One of the things that allows their customers to do then if these things aren't happening, they can then get through and have a positive conversation about the journeys they're actually looking to do in the app. And what we can see here, and that these are scores, so the higher the better in this case, is comparing 3.21 to 3.22 and some basic functionality like basically Monitoring my Account Activity average score was 1.8 at the 3.21 version and now it's 4.2. So, it's actually a very positive improvement across all of these particular journeys in here.

One of the outcomes of this is obviously you're improving the sentiment of the brand and one of the things we focused on last month was looking at how much Churn was happening or how much conversation about customers wanting to leave was going on. So, what we can do here, is have a look at the Churn that's happening with customers. These are HSBC customers and the mentions of Churn or Leaving and it was around 6.3% in April dropped down to around 4% averaging around 5% over those past periods and it suddenly dropped to 1%, and that 1% is actually in line with other banks. There's some that are lower than that, there's some that are about sort of far, there's one that's actually about 5% which is Santander but, getting down to 1% is actually really good for them and obviously maintaining that and lowering that just shows how well that massive change which from our perspective looks like a big Back-end change has had on that brand.

A very positive move and hopefully they can maintain that into the new versions coming through. Thank you, Glenn.

00:06:35 Glenn: Fantastic, Tony and, let's hope that it continues this way because there is a risk that it is a positive change but, is it a reaction of people that have been underserved for so long feeling positive about it and it's it looks really, really good.

So, let's hope for HSBC that this trend continues because nobody wants to see anybody performing poorly and well done to them if they have fixed those back-end issues but, it also highlights how critical it is to be able to monitor what those people are saying and identify where those issues are and the very, very simple approach that we can take to that.

So, if you want to have a look at your bank and your app, sing out, and we're more than happy to do a session with you.

Have a great day!


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