The scope and the sustained impact of the Covid-19 crisis have the potential to permanently change aspects of how consumers manage their accounts and investments. This emerging “new normal” is driving customers to digital channels by necessity, but service outages combined with long call-center wait times are likely to test customers’ patience and, ultimately, their loyalty. Maintaining a balance of technology and high-touch interaction during this time is critical as investors ride a roller coaster of emotions, volatile market conditions, and growing frustration and anxiety. 

Ongoing market turbulence will test institutions’ ability to handle enormous customer volume through chat, messaging, and other digital tools. The ability to deliver on these goals through digital channels effectively will hinge on investments made in account opening, customer service, money movement, and more. Consumer satisfaction with the ease of performing these functions will determine whether this behavior shift becomes permanent or displaced customers return to branches and ATMs as soon as they are again available.