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Unlocking Digital Excellence: Lessons for Banking from eCommerce Titans

Consumers are growing to expect the same responsiveness, availability, and reliability from banks as they do from eCommerce sites

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  • Written by  Mehdi Daoudi, CEO and co-founder, Catchpoint Systems
 
 
Unlocking Digital Excellence: Lessons for Banking from eCommerce Titans

In today’s digital-first world where consumer expectations for “always-on” experiences continue to rise, the banking industry is facing a crossroads to redefine its digital offerings to meet the evolving needs of its clients.

As consumers grow to expect the same responsiveness, availability, and reliability from banks as they do from the eCommerce sites they frequent, the benchmark for what defines a high-performing banking website closely mirrors that of their eCommerce counterparts. Speed, efficiency, and uninterrupted connection are no longer just desirable attributes but fundamental prerequisites for success in today's competitive landscape.

Despite their importance, however, many banks often neglect these metrics for two reasons: they don’t realize their significance, which can lead customers to believe that the banking sector considers user experience to be secondary; and there’s an underlying belief that customers will endure subpar services due to the inconvenience of switching banks and the hassle of transferring all their bill payments. Unfortunately, this has led to a sense of complacency within the financial industry.

Some banks, however, are standing out among the pack according to our recent analysis which sheds light on the key performance indicators distinguishing top-performing banking websites, offering valuable insights into what it takes to excel in the digital realm.

The eCommerce Blueprint for Banking

Catchpoint delved into the performance metrics of over 50 banking websites, uncovering new data about what makes top-performing sites stand out from the rest. Much like their eCommerce counterparts, high-performing banking websites perform well in three crucial areas:

  • Speed: A responsive website is critical in preventing user frustration and enhancing overall satisfaction. Banks must prioritize minimizing load times to ensure a seamless browsing experience for their customers.
  • Transaction Efficiency: From payments to fund transfers, banking websites must streamline transaction processes to facilitate quick and hassle-free interactions. A user-friendly interface coupled with efficient transaction mechanisms is essential for enhancing customer convenience.
  • Constant Availability: Maintaining round-the-clock availability is non-negotiable in today's digital age. Customers expect uninterrupted access to banking services, necessitating robust infrastructure and proactive monitoring to ensure uptime.

Catchpoint's analysis identified three banking websites — Franklin Templeton, Bank of New York Mellon Corp, and Thrivent Financial — at the top of the list for digital excellence. These sites consistently demonstrate industry-leading performance metrics, with fast load times, efficient transaction processes, and near-perfect availability rates. By prioritizing user experience and investing in cutting-edge technology, these banks have set the standard for digital banking today.

Overall Site Availability measures the reliability of a website, reflecting the proportion of time a website is accessible and functional over a given period as a percentage.

Here are the top 10 banks with the highest availability:

  • Bank of New York Mellon Corp. — 99.98% availability
  • Santander Bank — 99.97%
  • Thrivent Financial — 99.97%
  • JPMorgan Chase & Co — 99.96%
  • PNC Financial Services Corp. — 99.96%
  • CIBC — 99.95%
  • Putnam Investments — 99.94%
  • BB&T Corp. — 99.93%
  • Fidelity National Financial — 99.9%
  • Franklin Templeton — 99.9%

Domain Name System (DNS) time measures how long a website’s domain name can be translated into an IP address. Lower DNS times mean a quicker start to the page loading process.

Here are the top 10 banks with the lowest DNS numbers:

  • Franklin Templeton — 27 DNS (ms) GM
  • Regions Bank — 29
  • E-Trade Financial — 32
  • Quicken Loans — 48
  • Bank of New York Mellon Corp — 51
  • First Data Corporation — 66
  • Northern Trust — 70
  • Wells Fargo Bank — 73
  • Bank of America Home — 78
  • Fidelity National Financial — 84

Time to First Byte (TTFB) gauges the duration from the user’s request to the first piece of data received by their browser. A lower TTFB suggests a faster server response.

Here are the top 10 Banks with the lowest TTFB numbers:

  • Bank of New York Mellon Corp. — 119 Time To First Byte (ms) GM
  • Ameriprise — 213
  • CIBC — 231
  • Thrivent Financial — 246
  • Voya Financial — 256
  • Franklin Templeton — 267
  • Ally Bank — 283
  • Capital One — 284
  • Comerica Bank — 284
  • Fifty-Third Bank — 302

Embracing eCommerce Strategies for Banking Success

While the banking sector has made significant strides in digital transformation, there is still room for improvement. By adopting eCommerce strategies focused on the metrics laid out above, banks can elevate their digital offerings and deliver greater value to their customers. From optimizing website performance to embracing a customer-centric approach, banks must leverage lessons from eCommerce to stay ahead of the curve and meet evolving consumer expectations.

Additionally, as the digital revolution reshapes the banking industry, innovation is a critical differentiator for success. From embracing open banking to harnessing the power of emerging technologies, banks must proactively adapt to changing market dynamics and anticipate evolving customer needs.


About the author:
Mehdi Daoudi
is co-founder and CEO of Catchpoint, The Internet Resilience Company™. Before Catchpoint, Mehdi spent more than 10 years at DoubleClick and Google, where he was responsible for quality of services, as well as buying, building, deploying, and using various internal and external performance monitoring solutions, which sparked his interest in this space.

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