Global Consumer Banking Survey 2014

Know your 8 customer segments

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Our Global Consumer Banking Survey 2014 goes beyond traditional measurements of age, income and geography. It also defines customers based on the products they own, the channels they prefer and their reasons for trust.

We surveyed more than 32,000 customers across 43 countries to evaluate 31 banking experience elements. This research provides a unique view of today’s customer, regardless of location, and reveals opportunities for banks to more effectively invest resources and craft strategies to strengthen their customer relationships.

We grouped survey respondents into eight global segments. Each segment is defined by its members’ common behaviors and characteristics, including similar preferences in what they want from their primary financial service provider. The segments vary by size, assets and willingness to pay more for key benefits.

1. Upwardly Mobiles

EY - Upwardly Mobiles

Upwardly Mobiles are the smallest segment. They are young and highly educated, with high household incomes and significant investable assets.

They own the most products, but are prone to defecting because they view banks as relatively the same as alternative service providers. They value financial advice whether in person, over the phone or via self-service, and are most likely to experience problems that require assistance.

2. Elites

EY - Elites

Elites are older and highly educated with high household incomes and assets. They report strong levels of advocacy and trust, and show a willingness to increase their business with a bank that helps them achieve their financial goals. Elites are heavy users of online channels and value self-service financial management tools.

3. New World Adopters

EY - New World Adopters

New World Adopters are younger and highly educated, and have significant savings relative to their modest incomes. They are heavy users of technology and are receptive to new market entrants offering new ways of doing business.

They are also very active in opening and closing accounts. They view banks as relatively undifferentiated compared with alternative providers.

4. Balancers

EY - Balancers

Balancers are comfortable with remote channels, but value the relationship aspect of doing business with traditional banks. They place strong emphasis on fee transparency and assistance with problem resolution, and they do not open and close accounts frequently.

5. Safety Seekers

EY - Safety Seekers

The largest segment of the population, Safety Seekers are relatively younger, less educated and more limited in their cash flow and savings. Safety Seekers are likely to trust and advocate for their provider.

They strongly prefer using the branch for most banking services, but they have relatively small portfolios. They value fee transparency and keeping personal and financial information safe.

6. Traditionalists

EY - Traditionalists

Traditionalists are less educated and more limited in terms of income. They have the lowest remote channel usage and are heavy users of the ATM.

Traditionalists own the fewest number of products but are willing to increase engagement when offered new ways of doing business. They value being rewarded for loyalty.

7. Self-Sufficients

EY - Self-Sufficients

The Self-Sufficients are older, less educated and more limited financially. They have low levels of trust and rarely open and close accounts. They value convenience and would prefer to use self-service tools rather than consult a financial advisor.

8. Unhappy and Unmovings

EY - Unhappy and Unmovings

The Unhappy and Unmovings are the most critical of their primary financial service provider and the industry overall, but they are unlikely to move due to their belief that all providers are the same.

They have a high incidence of complaints around unexpected fees and low satisfaction with problem resolution. They are also infrequent users of both branch and remote channels. This segment is older, the least educated and has low household incomes and investable assets.



Customer segmentation is important, but it's also crucial to understand what all customers want from their banks. Learn about three key opportunities.

EY - Upwardly Mobiles
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EY - Elites
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EY - New World Adopters
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EY - Balancers
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EY - Safety Seekers
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EY - Traditionalists
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EY - Self-Sufficients
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EY - Unhappy and Unmovings
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