In this year’s Customer Experience Index, Forrester ranked and measured CX quality of 28 US direct and traditional retail banks brands. The research is based on Forrester’s CX Index methodology, which measures how well a brand’s CX strengthens the loyalty of its customers.

After analyzing the new data, we found that two stalwarts of CX quality top Forrester’s CX Index again in 2017:

  • USAA leads all direct banks. For the third year in a row USAA’s banking service led the industry in customer experience quality, and its overall score is significantly ahead of second-place Capital One 360.
  • Navy Federal Credit Union leads traditional retail banks. Navy Federal tops all traditional retail banks and comes within fractions of a point of catching USAA for top overall bank brand. As the largest credit union in the US, Navy Federal is known for its low rates and exceptional service.

The Keys To Achieving CX Leadership In Banking

A key component of driving revenue by providing great experiences is understanding which drivers and emotions most prominently affect your brand. In the banking industry specifically, Forrester’s 2017 CX Index revealed that:

  • Customer service is the most important driver category for direct banks’ CX. Fortunately for direct banks, 73% of customers said that direct banks provide good customer service. This means that the bar is high for making it easy to reach a person who can resolve problems, and resolve them quickly, making it hard to differentiate.
  • Traditional banks will see the least loyalty benefit from improving communication drivers. This category received the second-highest rating from customers, indicating that banks, on average, do a good job here. In fact, most banks are effective at communicating factual information, such as what customers have in their accounts. Where banks fall down is in taking the next step and helping customers understand what to do with that information and how to improve their financial situation.
  • The top emotions that drive loyalty for direct banks are feeling appreciated, confident, and valued. Forrester found that the impact of these positive emotions on loyalty was clear and strong: In the direct banking industry, among customers who felt valued, 90% will advocate for the brand.
  • Making customers feel confident is not a top loyalty driver for traditional banks. While feeling appreciated and valued top the list of emotions that drive loyalty, unlike direct banks, respect supersedes confidence with traditional banks. Sixty-seven percent of traditional banking customers reported they will stay with the brand when they feel respected.

To see the rankings of all 28 banking brands in the US CX Index and a much more detailed analysis of the results, check out The US Banking Customer Experience Index, 2017.