I read an interesting article in the New York Times: Bank Analyst Sees No Payoff in a Customer-Friendly Focus. It discusses how bank industry analyst Richard X. Bove believes that focussing on customers may be harmful for banks because it distracts them from making money. Here’s a bit of what he said:
Spending time solving problems with people is not selling products. It’s wasting time.
My take: First of all, I think that Bove is partially right. If you don’t have good products or if you don’t have solid sales processes, then you probably won’t have good business results; customer experience is not good enough on its own. As I’ve said for many years, customer experience is not a standalone activity, it needs to support your brand and business strategy.
Having said that, our research shows that companies with better customer experience have a better opportunity to improve their business results. That relationship holds up in our research across many industries.
I decided to take a look at one dimension of the Temkin Experience Ratings (easiness of doing business) and one dimension from the Temkin Loyalty Ratings (willingness to consider for another purchase) in banking. Here’s how those CX and loyalty items line up for 16 banks.
As you can see, there’s a high correlation between CX and potential loyalty. Just because 74% of USAA’s members are likely to consider the financial institution for another purchase, they aren’t going to do it unless USAA offers them an appropriate and competitive product.
The bottom line: CX is valuable, but not enough on its own