Nearly six out of every ten bank customers (58.4 percent) in Kenya use mobile banking to transact financial services, a new survey by Kenya Bankers Association shows.
Bank customers using internet/online Banking come at 20.3 percent, while the preference for ATMs to make withdrawals and deposits comes at 9.8 percent, says Banking Industry Customer Satisfaction Survey 2021.
Banking Apps are the topmost preferred digital banking feature, cited by 26 percent of the respondents, followed by mobile banking at 25 percent and Internet banking at 11 percent.
The preference for Apps is attributable to the introduction of banking software by various financial services providers, taking over functions that were previously conducted via mobile and Internet banking platforms.
The findings from close to 30,000 respondents further point to increasing digital preferences to expanding Internet penetration and access to Internet-enabled devices, which have given bank clients more transaction options.
In 2020, only about 52 percent of bank customers preferred using mobile banking as a transaction channel.
“The increase (to 58.4 percent) may be attributed to the challenges introduced by the pandemic and its containment measures, which have entrenched the use of contactless banking services,’’ the survey notes.
However, the proportion of customers that continued to use bank branches remained unchanged, at seven percent, in both 2020 and last year.
The survey also shows that most Kenyans are multi-banked, with at least eight out of 10 bank customers (62 percent) having between two and three bank accounts which was, however, a drop from the rate of 77 percent recorded in 2020.
The findings attribute the decline to reduced economic activity in the 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which triggered consolidations of funds by bank customers to reduce costs associated with maintaining many bank accounts.
The proportion of customers with disabilities remained largely unchanged from the 2020 levels, at 3.6 percent of all bank customers.
Out of this proportion, nearly eight out of every 10 bank customers (78.1 percent) classified as people living with disability (PwDs) indicated that they were able to use banking services independently, that is, without any assistance, with 14.3 percent requiring assistance.
“I challenge our member banks to institute measures towards enabling the remaining percentage to independently access financial services,’’ said KBA Chief Executive Officer, Dr Habil Olaka.
The survey shows that customers’ preferred mode of receiving support from banks was human-assisted services (46.4 percent), as fully automated/self-service interventions was preferred by 22.4 percent.
In the survey, Family Bank emerged as the best overall bank in digital experience, followed by Standard Chartered Bank and Equity Bank respectively.
In the Tier I category, Standard Chartered Bank took the top position, followed by Equity Bank and NCBA Bank in third position. Meanwhile, Family Bank emerged best in the Tier II category with Prime Bank and HFC Bank taking the second and third positions respectively.
ABC Bank topped in the Tier III category while Sidian and Gulf African Bank took the second and third positions, in that order.