Like it or not, the credit crisis and resulting consolidation are reshaping the banking landscape into a new era of one-stop financial supermarkets of banking and investing under one roof. And according to Forrester Research, most don’t like it.
Up to three-in-four households are not interested in consolidating their financial accounts with a single firm, a new Forrester report issued this week shows. In fact, many fear it, worried about institutional failure and the growing problem of data security. One of four of those households think having their accounts wrapped up with one provider makes their personal information more susceptible to a security breach.
But these “tepid” consumer responses aren’t changing the direction of the tide established by Citigroup, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase or Bank of America. Being a one-stop-shop will remain the key strategy for major institutions, and Forrester says that means banks will have to sharpen the product and channel focus if they want to win over the consumers more apt to accept a single provider—namely the Gen Y and mass-affluent segments.
Forrester’s Rx, as detailed in the report, pushes banks to brush up the cross-selling and marketing features through the Web site, and—in a non-tech related strategy—to embrace an open-product strategy for investment clients who want more than the in-house offerings of banks. (Forrester speculates that Citi’s penchant for favoring home-grown products perhaps prompted the announced departure of wealth management head Sallie Krawcheck—a “fierce client advocate”—from the organization).