Study: Over 50 Percent Go Mobile Only For “Online” Banking

Mobile path 2 purchaseThere’s now ample evidence that a large percentage of mobile device users are either “mobile only” or “mobile first.” Most digital marketers still fail to fully appreciate the implications of this development.

Further evidence of this mobile first/only population is provided by the latest data from the xAd/Telmetrics Path-to-Purchase Study (conducted by Nielsen). It focuses on mobile activity in the Banking & Finance vertical. The report found that more than 50 percent of smartphone and tablet users did not use a PC in the category to help in making purchase decisions.

The Mobile Path-to-Purchase Study is based on US mobile user survey data and behavioral analysis, using Nielsen’s smartphone panel of 6,000 Apple and Android owners.

Demo: Noticed mobile ads

As a general matter the study reports that “half of mobile Banking & Finance activity is transactional, including paying bills, transferring funds, paying via PayPal, the remaining 50 percent of mobile users are researching general banking information and/or looking for business location details.”

As one might expect the heaviest mobile users in the banking and finance category were younger: 43 percent of mobile banking users were under 35. These people were also aware of and receptive to mobile advertising (graphic above). However 45 – 54 year olds were the most likely to take action on mobile ads.

Another interesting finding is that more than 50 percent of mobile users converted on their devices. These figures are extraordinarily high.

Mobile banking conversions

The study found that the mobile web had slightly greater reach and was preferred for financial-related news, but apps saw considerably more engagement and time spent.

banking apps vs. mobile web

Users rated the content and features that were most important in category for mobile sites and apps. Mobile optimization was the most important feature.

Overall, tablet users were somewhat more satisfied (because of the larger screens) than smartphone users. However tablet apps/sites got dinged for being “not mobile friendly” and not having enough information in some cases.

What users want from banking sites/apps

This is only a partial discussion of the data from the study, which can be downloaded at (registration required).

Related Topics: Channel: Mobile Marketing | Statistics: Mobile Marketing | Top News


About The Author: is a Contributing Editor at Search Engine Land. He writes a personal blog Screenwerk, about SoLoMo issues and connecting the dots between online and offline. He also posts at Internet2Go, which is focused on the mobile Internet. Follow him @gsterling.

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  • Saqib Sherazi

    Great article. It is not surprising to me that people are using their smart phones to keep their finances in check. With a society that is over burdened with debt, families are having a hard time keeping afloat.
    There are some apps out there related to banking that help you track your daily finances, such as but some go even further to help predict your future habits such as Numbrs, which is planning its release early next year.

  • Entreb

    Mobile marketing will grow more in the coming years, Mobile devices are now not only limited to smart phones and tablets. There are also smart watches and even Google Glass is coming.

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