This study explores the motivations and barriers of consumers’ channel preferences for check ordering. It also explores the attitudes of financial institutions (FIs) toward the various check-ordering channels, and the strategies employed to maintain revenue and their relationships with customers while keeping errors at a minimum.

As the digital banking channel becomes the “go-to” channel for more consumers every day, FIs will need to reconsider the role of the traditional brick-and-mortar branch channel in how checks are ordered (and reordered). While many traditional products, such as paper checks, continue to play an integral role in the financial lives of consumers, how they are sold and serviced will need to change in the face of the growing consumer demand for digital servicing. In categorizing consumers by their preferences of banking behaviors (e.g., “branch first,” “online first,” “mobile first,” etc.), FIs and Deluxe can begin to develop strategies to optimize the check-ordering process for each channel. By transforming check orders in the digital channels from being a basic banking transaction to a delightful shopping experience, the FIs will begin to see higher value check reorders with fewer errors and reorder costs. Also, FIs will need to consider using digital tools in tandem with their tellers and customer service agents in order to empower their more traditional branch customers to use new channels.

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In July 2015, Deluxe retained Javelin to conduct an independent study on consumers’ check-buying channel preferences and financial institutions’ motivations and barriers to encourage self-service channels for check ordering. 

Javelin conducted an online survey of 600 Deluxe and non-Deluxe customers classified as follows:

  • 103 Deluxe customers using self-service channels for check ordering
  • 197 Deluxe customers using off-line channels for check ordering
  • 96 non-Deluxe customers using self-service channels for check ordering
  • 204 non-Deluxe customers using off-line channels for check ordering

In addition, qualitative data in this report are based on information collected from six in-depth interviews with executive decision makers at financial institutions. This included three major banks, one regional bank, one community bank, and one credit union. Insights were collected and analyzed from interview recordings and transcripts. Five respondents were representative of the Deluxe customer base, and one respondent was a non-Deluxe customer.