Research reveals extent of shift to digital banking
One in three people in Ireland now use banking apps from outside of the traditional sector, nearly double the number a year ago, new research has found.
The Consumer Banking Sentiment Survey, carried out for the Department of Finance, also found that 82% agree services provided by digital only banks are a good substitute for traditional ones.
The study by Behaviour and Attitudes found 1 in every 3 respondents now has some relationship with Revolut, up from 18% a year ago, but just 4% have their main current account with the fintech.
Respondents said the main appeal of digital only providers compared to traditional retail banks is instant money transfers, free banking and user friendly apps.
But despite the shift to digital banking, the use of ATMs for the withdrawal of cash has increased in popularity since last year, up 5% to 78%.
Overall, just 34% of the 1,500 people surveyed said they are very satisfied with their main financial provider, up from 31% in 2022, while 48% said they are satisfied.
4% claimed they are relatively dissatisfied and 2% very dissatisfied.
The main retail banks continue to dominate when it comes to day to day banking, with 41% of those questioned saying they have their main current account with AIB, 33% with Bank of Ireland and 13% with Permanent TSB.
Just over two in five people have just one financial provider, down three points since 2022, with 57% being multi-banked.
69% possess a savings account, down 6%, with 1 in 3 owning a credit card. Just over one fifth have a mortgage, down 4%.
Just 9% have switched current accounts, up five percentage points over the year, and 10% have moved their mortgages, also up five points.
37% of those who switched current accounts said it was very easy, with around a fifth reporting difficulties.
Respondents said they believe choice in the market is highest for savings accounts and lowest for mortgages.
“The world of banking is changing rapidly and the results of this survey bear that out,” said Minister for Finance Michael McGrath.
“A growing number of people are availing of digital financial services and that trend is set to continue.”
“We must ensure that we are prepared for this change and that ultimately customers continue to be protected.”
The survey results were published alongside the Financial Consumer Protection Roadmap, which aims to ensure focus continues on helping consumers with banking and financial services.