Can mobile services integration boost neobank adoption in the US?
July 1st, 2024, Kineree Shah

Can mobile services integration boost neobank adoption in the US?

A recent survey by YouGov asked 1,185 US adults about their willingness to switch to a neobank – a digital bank that operates solely online through apps or websites. We also explored how consumers perceive the merging of banking and telecommunications services, a trend that is gaining traction.

One in five Americans say they are likely to consider switching to a neobank in the next six months (19%) with adults aged 18-34 (33%) and men (23% vs. 15% females) more interested. A much larger group, 65%, stated that they are unlikely to switch.

For those willing to switch to a neobank, the inclusion of mobile data services as part of a premium subscription appears quite appealing. Among these respondents, 65% indicated they would likely pay a premium fee if it included benefits like eSIM services and mobile data for international travel.

Additionally, half of consumers (47%) found it important to have their financial and mobile services combined into one app. This suggests that bundling mobile services with banking could be a strong incentive for attracting new customers.

Conversely, those unlikely to switch to a neobank were asked which features might change their minds. The most appealing features included higher credit limits and cashback (17%), zero-fee overdraft protection (15%), and budgeting tools and spending insights (9%). Other features like low-fee international money transfers, easy access to the stock market, and eSIM services were less influential.

Some 57% of those unlikely to switch indicated that none of the above features would persuade them to move to a neobank possibly because traditional banks still hold a significant edge. Only 10% of Americans expressed more trust in neobanks compared to traditional banks, while 47% reported more trust in traditional banks. One-fifth of consumers (22%) indicated that they trust both types of banks equally.

In summary, while there is interest in the integration of financial and mobile services, trust in traditional banks remains strong, and many consumers are hesitant to switch to neobanks. Features like mobile data services can attract new users, but overcoming trust barriers and providing compelling benefits will be crucial for neobanks aiming to expand their customer base.

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online on 5-6 June 2024, with a nationally representative sample of 1,185 adults (aged 18+ years) in the US, using a questionnaire designed by YouGov. Data figures have been weighted by age, race, gender, education, and region to be representative of all adults in the US (18 years or older), and reflect the latest population estimates from the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.