Mobile banking has never been more popular and is set to overtake online banking in 2019, according to a new forecast.
Financial services analyst CACI reports that last year 22 million customers used mobile banking apps to manage their current accounts – an average increase of 3.4 million users a year in over the past five years.
It predicts that, by 2023, 35 million people – 60% of current account holders – will manage their accounts via mobile apps and reports that customers now visit a bank branch only five times a year on average, raising fears that hundreds more branches will close.
The growth in digital banking will be driven by older consumers in rural areas and coastal towns adopting digital banking.
However, bank branches are still the preferred choice in some cases, with the CACI predicting only a 6% decline in people visiting their bank in the next five years.
Jamie Morawiec, associate partner at CACI, says: “Our figures show there is a continued role for branches as part of the channel mix. More considered purchases – mortgages, investment products – will continue to drive footfall throughout the next five years.”
Commenting on the data, Anne Boden, chief executive of mobile-only Starling Bank, says: “App-only banking is popular because it allows consumers full control of their money on the move – no laptops, no card readers.
“As mobile payments rapidly become more common place, and the big banks struggle to keep pace with the technology, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see banking apps overtake online banking by next year.”