Spanish banking giant Santander tops the list of lenders UK customers would be most likely to take out a loan or credit card with, according to the most recent consumer research conducted by global customer experience expert, Webhelp.

Overall 18% of the 500 consumers surveyed said they would be most likely to take out a credit card or loan with the Madrid-based bank. In second place, with 16% of the vote was Halifax/Bank of Scotland and a further two points behind, at 14%, was RBS/Natwest. Joint fourth, with 10% of the vote were HSBC and Tesco Bank.

However, men are much more likely to favour the European bank than women, with 20% of men opting for Santander as opposed to 15% of women. In fact, Santander was the third choice for women, behind Halifax/Bank of Scotland and RBS/Natwest, who tied for first place with 16% of the female vote.

David Turner, CEO of Webhelp UK, SA and India, said: “The people in our survey stated that trust and an excellent customer experience were crucially important to them in their choice of lender. These results indicate that perhaps UK banks are still struggling to regain trust lost during the financial crisis – especially with men.

“While the reputation of a brand takes time to recover when trust has been lost, putting in place market leading customer experience solutions can help to bring customers back or keep them loyal.

“It is crucial for companies to take a close look at their customer experience solutions and ask themselves if they are really delivering what their customers want.”


The Top 10 credit lenders, as identified by the Webhelp survey, are as follows:


  1. Santander – 18%
  2. HBoS – 16%
  3. RBS/Natwest – 14%
  4. HSBC -10%
  5. Tesco – 10%
  6. Sainsbury’s – 7%
  7. M&S – 5%
  8. Virgin – 4%
  9. Nationwide – 3%
  10. Lloyds – 2%