The UK banking sector continues to adapt to the digital age, and the role of mobile banking apps is central to this transformation. Touchpoint Group's September 2023 Banking App Insight session, led by Glenn Marvin and Tony Patrick, sheds light on the performance dynamics of major players in the space, with a specific focus on Chase UK.
September 2022 UK Legacy Banks App Performance Snapshot
In this month’s UK Legacy bank snapshot we turn our attention to Barclays to find out what’s behind the downward trend in their rankings.
Issues affecting Android users increases churn risk for Barclays.
Previously Barclays enjoyed a good position within the UK Legacy bank category - competing well with the better performers. From June onward, Barclays has been slipping downwards and has not managed to turn things around. Where we find Barclays as at September 2022, is sitting at the lowest ranking they have been at all year.
To understand what happened in the period between June and September, and more specifically, what Barclays need to be focussing their attention to, Tony begins the review with Touchpoint Group's SURF Analysis tool. This view looks at how well Barclays' app is performing within the four key areas that an app absolutely needs to perform well in: Security, Usability, Reliability, and Functionality. SURF quantifies the pain points to bring to the forefront the issues that need to be fixed so that Barclays improves their Engaged Customer Scores (ECS).
Tony identifies ‘Reliability’ and ‘Security & Authentication’ as the main areas affected by problems due to the Android version of the app. We can see a significant rise in complaints in the September period correlating to the latest version of the app, which is an indication that the problem is worse than it was previously. In addition, Tony reveals further problems under the SURF pillar of ‘Functionality’ with the app crashing when customers use calendar view.
With the same version of the app causing the issues for Barclays’ customers, and the ESC scores declining there is much work to be done by Barclays to provide a better experience for their Android users.
UK Legacy banks Engaged Customer Score (ECS) performance rankings for September 2022
Don’t let unknown issues impact churn risk. Find out how your banking app performs by contacting Touchpoint Group today for a customised insights session.
00:00:05 - Glenn: Hello and welcome back to another Banking App Insight Session and today we are looking at the UK Legacy Banks or the traditional banks in the UK. And in particular we're going to dive into Barclays who traditionally have been great performers but over the last three months they have dropped in their rankings month on month and potentially at the lowest ranking point that they have been at this year. And at the heart of it we have seen a massive increase in Functionality and Reliability issues in the last month and Tony Patrick, you're going to dig into that. But it can be quite a concern if it's three months in a row that they haven't been able to get on top of these sorts of things, isn't it?
00:00:48 - Tony: Yeah, definitely. So... I'll jump into that three-month in a row area because it's a very important point. But today we'll cover off the UK Banks in terms of Lloyd's as we said Barclays, NatWest, Nationwide, Santander UK, and HSBC UK.
So, let's jump into one of the first things we'd like to look at which is: what are the trends? So that just helps us understand what's going on in the market here. I'll just- I'll put HSBC in here to give
us some context. We've seen their rise over the past few months because they've had problems- systemic problems with some back-end issues that are causing problems across the board for them. They've actually picked up in line with some other Banks but that sort of dropped recently. So there's still sort of a bit lower than others and they need to watch out they don't sort of go back down they were before.
Let's remove this - HSBC. So we can get our scale back into some sort of order because it was very low and again potentially here we can see that Santander has had some issues in July. They've picked themselves up into September. But one of the things I can see here is that Barclays is actually moving. It was competing well with the likes of Lloyds at the top there which is one of the best global performers but Barclays was competing up there but from June it's dropped month on month. And it's fairly flat July to August 4.3. But again it's continued down from that point on.
So we need to understand what's happened between June and September and what can Barclays do to fix that. So let's have a brief look and a good way to look at this is coming from Android and iOS. Now, it's not sort of obvious, there's no clear Direction but one of the things we do see is that the volume of data coming through for this particular bank is Google Play. So Android and that Trend we can see there that movement down is sort of reflecting what we saw in that main data there, the iOS one jumps around a fair bit there. But, we can see it's coming from it is coming from from Android but what we can see or a bit of both though let's jump in though and have a look at so one of our standard views around our pain points so what we're looking at here is the pain points happening across four key areas.
What I might do is I'll order this so it spells out our acronym nicely so - Security, Authentication, Usability, Reliability, and Functionality. This is our SURF Analysis so it looks at these four key areas where you need to perform on - and these are pain points, so getting these things right make sure your score remains stable and reliable at the top. We can see there, obviously a higher number is worse so, we're comparing June to September and it's a lot worse on Reliability.
We can see here Security and Authentication. Yeah, logging in, it's got slightly worse but it's not a major jump. We can see there's some still - some issues there. What we can see though is Reliability has jumped up in a big way. What we can do is just select that and have a look at a bit of detail.
First thing we can do is have a quick glance about what's over-indexing. Which particular Categorical Variables are over-indexing. Obviously Barclays because it is - this is Barclays data, we can see it's Google Play - so an Android issue, and we can see it's actually version 2.65.2 of the app. So, the most recent versions has caused these issues and it looks like there's... it's something if they don't address this soon this could continue you know, moving on-and-on, month-on- month. And we've discussed this previously, if you start to go three or four months in a row you can probably struggle to get back out of that dip if you're not exactly sure what's going on.
Let's move forward slightly and have a look at what's actually going on. So this is looking at those same things we just saw before so, the SURF Analysis. Security, Authentication, Usability, Reliability, and Functionality. And again, these are pain points so, lower is better. What we can see if I have a quick glance across from August down to say, May, I could probably say there's a bit of a decline there, which is great. There's sort of been an incremental Improvement across time.
However, when we hit this sort of good point the last good point in June we start to see these things start to rise, and in particular we can see a big rise in September which means the effect of the things happening in September with that latest version of the app is actually a lot worse than it was previously. So, they've maybe exacerbated some issues and other things are getting worse as well. So, not a good sign.
What we can do though is also see how does this compare to others? We know this is looking at September here we know that Barclays is sort of up the top there with the likes of Lloyds. But you can see in September though these issues are actually a lot higher than others, particularly this Reliability and Functionality issues that are going on against we talked about Security and Authentication - it's not coming from that because we can see they're fairly lined up with others.
But one of the things here I can see is that we've got Functionality is actually fairly high in terms of pain points for Barclays. Let's have a look at that in a bit more detail because that is a clear problem area.
So again, what we can do here is we can look at a few things. I can look at a summary of what's going on. I can probably- the best way to do is explain here- let's have a look at a few things: number one, I can look at it from a segment perspective. So this is looking at our- we looked at this before but, this is looking at our Any Categorical Variables. In my data I can see what's over-indexing. As I said before because of course it's Barclays, but it's Android and version 2.65.2, but let's have a look though What's happening inside here? What was the problem with this functionality? What's going on?
So, very quickly I can see something that stands out to me, there's something wrong with the calendar. The calendar view... it looks like it's in red, which means there's a problem there. Let's double click on that and actually understand what's going on in September here. Let's filter here... I might just leave it as it is because these are sort of - these look like a lot of negative stuff coming through. So... "The calendar view crashes. It logs me out of the application. It just doesn't work... It's the only function I need and it doesn't work for me".
Again, this is just looking at things like your balances and things like that and upcoming payments and things like that and it looks like it's not working for customers. Even this customer here who gave a four we can see there that... "the calendar view crashes... it used to be useful but it's gone now". So again, this version of the app is causing an issue. Let's have a look actually what version that might be and what I'll do in here I'll add a few variables I can see against my each comment and go back. And what I can see here is something very familiar. I can see version 2.65.2 with Google Play is causing these issues across the board. So, that is where Barclays needs to focus right now but, of course there's other things going on I've just gone down one path here. They need to obviously focus on these to bring these numbers up and again, as I said, if this continues across time you start to bring up things like the churn... people threatening churn as part of this so it needs to be fixed ASAP.
00:07:58 - Glenn: Yeah, very good point. How some of these fundamental issue,s if they are consistently underperforming can lead to greater churn risk and we've seen that's very much the case in the US with Chase over the last quarter as well so... Thank you very much Tony, and look forward to another great month of insights next month.
And if you want to talk to Touchpoint in and around your Banking App and how you can get better experiences out of it. Yeah, hit us up, and we'll see you next month.
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