The Best And Worst Banks In SA According To Social Media

We all have our banking anecdotes, whether good or bad. And, since the advent of social media, customer service has become a very public affair. Marketing and research firm, BrandsEye, released data last year on the banks in South Africa. The report reveals received the most positive, or most negative, sentiments from social media in the preceding year.

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The Best And Worst Banks In South Africa

BrandsEye focused on the five major banks in South Africa. Namely: Standard Bank, ABSA, Nedbank, FNB, and Capitec. According to social media activity between June 2015 and June 2016, FNB was the most complained about bank in South Africa. Making up 40% of negative sentiment online. Following closely behind was Standard Bank with 39%, Absa with 34%, Capitec with 29%, and, the least complained-about bank, Nedbank with 20%.

In terms of positive feedback, Capitec, now the third biggest bank, took the lead with just under 40%. Absa brought up the rear with the least positive feedback at 24%.

When it came to customer service, Capitec took the lead again with 21.3% of positive experiences cited online, and 42% complaints. Standard Bank scraped the barrel with only 8.5% of positive experiences cited online, compared to 59.7% negative.

What The Little Birdies Are Saying

While FNB has recently come under attack on account of the recent bank heists under the hashtag #fnbheist; Absa bank lost a man’s life savings in December in a negligent, bank-assisted, transfer. Here’s a roundup of the past year’s activity on Twitter from customers comparing banks:

The Future Of Banks In South Africa

Social media has posed a formidable foe to ‘the way things have always been done’. This along with the industry disruption caused by the growing fintech (financial technology) industry is sure to alter the future of banking.

Recently, serial investor and former CEO of FNB, Michael Jordaan, said to CNBC Africa that he would love to take on the banks in the future as he believes there’s a lot more that can be done with new technology. Jordan, who’s entered the telecommunications and broadband industries through strategic investments, says we’re going to see a big switch.

“In the future, banks will become more like telecommunications companies, while telecoms players are trying to muscle into banking,” said Jordaan.

He warns that there are “lots of businesses” being started globally, including in telecommunications and banking, that have very low cost bases. He predicts that, in the next 10 years, we’ll see many incumbents (big banks in South Africa) fighting against these upstarts.

“These upstarts don’t have big brands and lots of customers yet, but they have the benefit of new technologies and very low costs,” said Jordaan.

Jordaan states that disruptive businesses are great for consumers and has expressed his desire to play a role in bringing them to South Africa.


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