The Q1 2023 benchmarking report for UK Online banking companies has just been published. Learn how the top 7 UK Online banking companies perform across the digital space.
The latest Q1 2023 benchmarking report for UK Online banking companies has just been published. It covers the largest 7 national Online banking companies, including Starling Bank, Tandem, Monzo, Chase, Atom bank, Revolut and Monese.
The research gives an inside track on who is winning the biggest share of voice online, and quantifies the gaps, risks and missed opportunities for other online banking companies to win brand exposure, generate online views, and drive sign-ups for new accounts. The report highlights quick wins that will improve enquiries from your online strategy and identifies the barriers that may be reducing your site’s ability to optimise digital performance.
To see a preview and contents page of the Q1 report, click here. To get a copy of the full report and the key takeaways, please complete the enquiry form or schedule a call.
What The Industry Research Report Covers
The 70+ pages of research benchmarks each retailer based on 50+ metrics and indicators of successful digital strategy, including organic visibility, domain authority, paid media ads, conversion performance, technical performance, site speed, universal search, content, social ads, accessibility, and mobile performance.
Driving Optimal ROAS from Paid Media Channels
Some of the leading players in the space are high spenders on paid media channels such as Google, Bing & Facebook - but have a poor or sub-optimal conversion improvement strategy. Without an optimised, sophisticated conversion strategy that maximises the conversion rate, the return on investment is unsustainable or will underperform. Scaling spend on paid media is not achievable unless the conversion rate delivers optimal performance in the sector. Some in the space have paid media spend levels from 30k+ per month but dedicate minimal resources and budgets to conversion testing. Given the cost per clicks on ad networks will continue to rise, we recommend spending at least 10% of your paid media budget on ongoing conversion optimisation testing schedules to ensure your paid media ROI maintains long-term viability, competitive advantage, and sustainability.
Technical Website Compliance
Savvy digital marketers know that having a technically sound website is an essential component of a successful fully integrated digital strategy - plus a site capable of maximising conversion performance. For online banking companies, their website is one of the most important components of their business, it is vital for their site to be running smoothly to ensure their customers can easily navigate to key conversion points.
Whilst most of the online banking companies we researched had a fairly low amount of website errors, all seven of the brands had at least a few 4xx or 5xx errors showing. Monzo are seeing the worst level of 4xx error codes, with 259. Monzo need to be looking into the cause of these errors.
Site Speed & Conversion Rate Performance
When 62% of consumers are less likely to convert if they have a negative mobile site experience, ensuring that your site is quick and easy to load makes a significant improvement on your overall conversion rates. For online banking companies, their customers need to have full and absolute trust in their brand. A slow, lagging mobile site will not ensure the customer has trust and may lead them to try other businesses instead.
We would expect most to achieve at least an ‘okay’ score of 50-89, whereas only four of the seven online banking companies did. The mobile page speed scores are currently between 31 and 82, with Chase lagging behind. All the brands that are scoring below 50 have some serious work to do on improving their mobile page speed.
Building Competitive Advantage with Domain Authority
Domain authority is an essential metric for measuring the effectiveness of SEO performance, and helps create a reliable overall gauge of how effective your site is at achieving organic traffic, i.e. ‘free’ traffic that isn’t gained through sponsored ads. Online banking companies should be continually pushing to improve their DA.
A ‘good’ DA really comes down to how your competitors are performing, however it’s generally considered average between 40 and 50, good between 50 and 60, and excellent above 60. All of the seven brands achieved a score of good or above, with the DA ranging from 56 to 82. Chase are the lowest-scoring brand. Those at the lower end of the scale need to be focusing on building a stronger backlink profile to compete with the higher scoring Online banking companies.
Organic Performance – Mobile & Desktop
A strong organic performance is strategically important as it ensures your site ranks above competitors for key, transactional keywords. When 93% of your customers won’t go past the first page of Google, your absence or lack of targeting for essential keywords will cost you conversions. With online banks increasing in popularity, especially post-pandemic, we would expect all the companies to be seeing increases in their mobile and desktop traffic.
We looked at how all seven Online banking companies have performed compared to last year. Continuous improvement and optimisation is also needed to secure traffic year on year. We discovered that only five of the Online banking companies in our report have gained organic mobile traffic year on year. Chase saw the biggest gain with a 746% increase, whilst Monese saw the biggest loss of 27%.
Universal Search Opportunity
Google Universal Search Results is an evolving opportunity to make your pages visible on a SERP (Search Engine Results Page). Universal results often appear before traditional listings and are eye-catching for users. Universal search results refer to rankings on a SERP that are not the traditional ‘blue line’ Google link, and a retailer can appear for universal search results without being strong in standard rankings. Online banking companies should be utilising all universal search features as their customers will be interested to see how previous customers have found their experience and build trust, via Reviews, FAQs and People Also Ask.
We could see that People Also Ask was the highest used universal search feature, with Revolut taking the top spot reaching 3,600 results. Some brands are underusing all universal search feature options and only seeing a handful of results. Those getting a small number of results need to work towards the numbers their competitors are achieving.
The Longtail Keyword Opportunity
Longtail keywords are often considered high intent and potentially more likely to convert as a searcher is being more specific. Optimising for longtail keywords also puts your content strategy in a strong position to rank for retailer new search terms as they enter Google’s index. There are many longtail keyword options that online banking companies could be using.
Monese are ranking for a significantly low number of longtail keywords compared to their competitors, with very few of their longtail keywords ranking in the top 20. Monese should be looking at how to improve their rankings on existing longtail keywords, but also at how they can expand their strategy to include new specific search terms.
With the number of Facebook users in the United Kingdom (UK) forecast to hit over 42 million users by 2022, it is not surprising that brands have jumped at the opportunity to advertise on the social media platform. Facebook’s UK digital advertising revenue has been estimated to have breached 2.6b GB pounds in 2019. Social media is a great way to advertise for online banking companies as their potential customers are already online.
Below, we can see examples of Chase’s Facebook ads. The use of images of their different products, such as their debit card and mobile app, along with clear CTAs and mixing still images and video content, make the advert eye-catching to scrolling social media users.
Top Social Shares & Content
When it comes to social media and on-site content strategies, it is important to release content that has a longer shelf life. An article is considered 'Evergreen' if it has maintained its relevancy to an audience for longer. It's great for your retailer engagement, but great for Google too, who will recognise content which achieves traffic over a long period of time. Online banking companies should be utilising social media to share more about their products and offers.
We saw in our research that Tandem and Atom bank are falling behind their competitors when it comes to both Facebook Likes and Instagram Followers. Both companies need to look into how they can compete with the other online banking companies.
Website Readability & Accessibility
20% of people in the UK have a disability – 2 million of which are people living with sight loss. In addition, 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women have some degree of colour vision deficiency. When websites are not designed to meet these needs, retailers lose customer interest as they turn elsewhere. With online banking companies gaining momentum, they need to ensure that their websites are accessible to everyone.
All of the online banking companies appear to be struggling with accessibility within their sites and seeing an array of errors, contrast errors, and alerts. Revolut are seeing the worst amount, hitting 64 alerts on their website. The online banking companies seeing issues should be reviewing and optimising their accessibility, and investigating to see what the issues within their websites are.
Q1 2023 WINNERS LEADERBOARD
For a glance into just 6 of the metrics we evaluated these top 7 Online banking companies on, check out our quick-look table below;
GET THE FULL 70-PAGE Q1 2023 REPORT
To get a copy of the full report, please complete the enquiry form. If you want to talk to us about accelerating your digital performance, please call us on 01543 410014 or schedule a call with Mike Movassaghi.