Thirty-nine percent of all Europeans go to an automated teller machine (ATM) each week, making it the most frequently used banking channel. Many European banks are thinking about exploiting this traffic to increase customer self-service by offering additional functionality, such as account transfers and bill payments; however, Forrester Research, Inc. (NASDAQ: FORR) reports that European consumers have little interest in additional ATM functionality. Forrester warns that to reap the benefits of ATM replacement ¿ like branch volume reductions, better customer experiences, and advertising revenues ¿ banks must integrate the ATM network into their overall multichannel strategies. They must also understand customers¿ current behavior, carefully plan new functionality deployments, and then give customers incentives to adopt.

Benjamin Ensor, Senior Analyst, Financial Services at Forrester says: ¿European consumers are skeptical about new ATM functionality and services. In fact, our Consumer Technographics® research shows that the customers that many banks would most like to migrate to ATMs ¿ frequent branch users ¿ are less interested in new ATM services than telephone and online banking users are. Less than 10% of consumers are interested in using ATMs to get information about products like loans or insurance. Only 18% of consumers would use the ATM to make payments to other people.¿

Banks Must Tie ATM Deployment To Their Right-Channeling Strategies

Forrester believes that to persuade consumers to use other ATM functionality, banks will need to present the machines clearly, show customers how to use the functionality in the branch itself, and perhaps charge a small fee for branch-counter transactions that customers could perform on the same branch¿s ATMs.

Ensor concludes: ¿We believe that implementing advanced ATM functionality only makes sense if it helps the bank achieve its overall strategic objectives, such as increasing customer loyalty, boosting sales, and reducing branch costs. Services like providing Internet access or selling tickets don¿t sit well with banks¿ core banking business and will distract managers for little benefit. Instead, banks should focus on, for example, right-channeling routine transactions away from the branch and call center, boosting product sales and loyalty with careful use of ATM advertising, and driving Internet banking adoption.¿

The research mentioned in this release, “What ATM Functionality Do Consumers Want?¿ and “The ATM Functionality Quandary: Should Banks Deploy ATMs That Offer More Than Just Cash Withdrawal?¿ is available to Forrester WholeView 2¿ clients.