Home loan websites suck, research reveals

by Julia Corderoy27 Nov 2015
The Australian mortgage industry has the weakest website customer experience compared with other financial products and industries, a comprehensive consumer review has revealed.

According to a report by leading researcher of consumer behaviour, Global Reviews, home loans  was the equal worst performing industry-alongside energy retail across the 15 most recent benchmark studies conducted on website usability. 

Home loans recorded an overall customer experience average of 46%, significantly below other financial services products such as personal loans (63%) and credit cards (62%), which were the two highest rating industries.

Ché Carbis, regional commercial director of Global Reviews, says this could damage consumer trust in your brand.

“The disparity of website usability in the banking industry was alarming as many mortgage providers also provide other financial products. 

“With trust and usability going hand in hand, brands with poor digital experiences for consumers in-market for a home loan, are creating confusion and reducing trust levels a consumer places with a brand.”

Whilst customer loyalty and awareness is always touted as a main driver of repeat business, Carbis says the results show this is not always the case in the mortgage sector.  

“Familiarity does play a large part in the final selection for most mortgage brands but with just under 60% selecting another provider, brands should be considering ways to better retain existing customers,” he said.

Specifically, when researching the customer journey, the industry fell short across facilitating decisions, channel selection and applying online.

“The industry is strong across initial engagement, introducing and evaluating options, but starts to become more inconsistent as consumers move towards the application stage.

“Some improvements have been made since 2014 but consumers are still finding channel selection, which involves choosing how and where to apply for the product and the actual application process difficult. 

“Given the increasing amount brands are investing in making themselves more relevant to customers and the fact that 27% of customers stated that they would want to apply for a home loan online, it will be interesting to see how brands have evolved their online experience, in our next study period, and if they will capitalise on this want for an online application.”