As digital banking capabilities have expanded, consumer adoption of online and mobile channels has continued to climb. Surprisingly, consumer use of traditional banking channels — branch, ATM, call center — has dropped little. Consumers continue to turn to offline channels in high volumes for activities more easily accomplished through digital channels. The reasons for this continued use of traditional channels for digital-capable transactions are varied, from consumer preference for speaking with a person, to the perceived convenience of bundling multiple transactions into a single branch visit, to consumer inertia from always having completed an activity in a particular channel. To encourage further digital migration, banks must provide greater support during digital transactions, including setting clear expectations and highlighting policies and limits prominently.

Key questions discussed in this report:
  • Why has offline channel use not declined in proportion to digital adoption?
  • Why do consumers still prefer offline options when digital offers greater convenience?
  • How do banks determine when digital channels are not the right answer for a situation?
  • How can offline channels help increase consumer awareness and adoption of digital channels?

The consumer data in this report is based on information collected from Javelin surveys that targeted populations representative of the overall U.S. population in proportions of gender, age, and income:

  • A random-sample panel of 10,768 consumers conducted from June to July 2017. The margin of sampling error is ± 0.94% at the 95% confidence level.
  • A random-sample panel of 3,182 respondents collected online during July-August 2016. The overall margin of sampling error is +1.74 percentage points at the 95% confidence level.