Today, 86% of contacts between customers and their banks are via digital, mainly smartphone, against 31% only ten years ago. A development which raises the question of the evolution of the mesh bank branches.

Remember, that was ten years ago. To realize an ordinary banking transaction, you push the door of your office – in 33% of cases – or you call your advisor for 36% of you. Banking on the Internet? They represented only 31% of contacts between customers and their banks. That was in 2003, there is an eternity.

Today, 86% of French contacts between consumers and their bank is performed by the digital, and the agencies has fallen to 8%, according to the Observatory’s 2013 opinion on the image banks, made by Ifop and the French Banking Federation .

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But even the computer begins to be exceeded, since it is used for 38% of contacts, against 48% for mobile devices, the foremost among smartphones. ” At Society General, the number of transfers by mobile has doubled in the space of one year, one million per month, ” says Antoine Pichot, director of multichannel within the Retail Banking Division France.

France has about 24 million smartphone owners

However, there is only six years, the weight of these “smart phones” in the bank account was zero. It was reckoning without the launch of Apple’s first iPhone in 2007, when smartphone sales began to take off. Today, France has about 24 million smartphone owners, 44.4% of the population aged 11 years and older, according to the quarterly barometer made ​​by the Mobile Marketing Association France .

And use of the iPhone and other Samsung Galaxy in the banking relationship is not the prerogative of “digital natives” or “geeks.” ” All of our customers are largely “digital” is beyond the phenomenon of generation group ” confirms Antoine Pichot. As the digitization of the relationship between customers and their bank is it anything but ” a thesis, a gadget ” for Goutard Lawrence, director of retail bank Society General in France. It is rather ” the heart reflections ” strategic group.

Close fifty agencies 2015

An evolution that ” obviously raises the question of our mesh agency ” recognizes Frederick Jacob Peron, marketing director of retail banking in France General. In fact, no later than November 28,(Cadif) announced its intention to close fifty agencies, a total of 325 by 2015. And so, in particular, to adapt ” to technological developments and new behaviors (its) clients. ” However, there should not be any job cuts in the key, the objective being to Cadif, to have more spacious agencies, including six employees to a minimum. 300 tellers and sales advisors will be promoted in a sense ” growing competence and qualification of employees “, says Cadif.

Approximately 80% of digital natives want contact with a bank branch

Similarly, closed thirty small agencies in urban areas, this year on the 3,200 that have the network of general and that of its subsidiary credit of North. And the group should continue at this pace, in 2014, says Laurent Goutard. The goal is to combine these small agencies to build larger, where generalist advisers can refer clients to specialists in the real estate credit, wealth management, business services, ” a little on the model of the medical community ” smiles Laurent Goutard. Indeed, since customers are now able, through their smartphones, to perform all say transactional services like transfers themselves, the bank branch should become the locus of value-added services, said Frederic Jacob Peron.

Retail banking is not the steel of tomorrow

Services that customers demand, as they are addicted to online banking. “Approximately 80% of digital natives we wonder want contact with a bank, it reassures them for more complex operations, such as taking out a student loan and savings products as they seek to place their first wages ” says Fredric Jacob Peron. ” In the context of digital bank adviser agency remains at the heart of the relationship between the customer and the bank ” , says Laurent Goutard. retail banking does not seem close to becoming the steel of tomorrow , with closures agencies and layoffs shovel, contrary to what many observers predict it for 35 years.