A new report by social intelligence firm, Ubiquity, has revealed which of South Africa’s retail banks are winning over the country’s social media populace.
The report analysed Absa, Capitec, FNB, Nedbank and Standard Bank, gauging the opinions of South Africans on social media around key banking issues, such as customer service, banking fees, credit and savings.
The analysis looked only at consumer discussions, excluding more than 80% of social data relating to SA’s banks, which was created by the banks themselves, their agencies and partners.
According to Ubiquity, Capitec is South Africa’s best bank, based on its analysis, and the only bank to receive a net positive opinion on social media.
Nedbank was found to be the worst, with the highest negative rating – though Standard Bank had the lowest positive rating.
FNB, seen as a brand leader online, was a mixed bag, with the report finding that more FNB customers engage on social media than any other bank, thus giving it the greatest “mind share” online.
However, FNB also receives more negative recommendations than any other other bank, closely followed by Standard Bank and Absa.
While more prospective customers are looking into FNB than any other bank, it, along with Absa, also have the highest proportion of customers indicating their intention to leave.
“Traditionally, there’s a widely-held belief that consumers will more readily complain and express negative opinions towards companies and brand, as oppose to complimenting and expressing positive opinions,” Ubiquity said.
“This is not necessarily true in a digital age, as people will share thoughts, opinions and experience, whether positive or negative, especially if incentivised to do so.”
Best and worst banks by service
According to the group’s analysis, credit has overtaken banking fees as the number one most talked about issue on social media, though opinions are split between positive and negative discussions relating to it.
Absa was the only bank to have a net positive score on credit-related issues.
Customer service by far draws the most negative response on social media, with more than half of all service related comments being negative.
Customer service has been deteriorating since Q3 2014, the group noted, adding that “the market is extremely opinionated about this issue”.
Banking Fees and Costs
Opinions are most negative towards Nedbank and FNB around banking fees and costs, while Capitec leads the way by some margin.
Promotions intended to help people save money, drew a the most positive responses, but these still only accounted for a fifth of related comments.
Overall, opinions on savings are becoming more negative, the report found.