With credit playing such an important role in our daily lives the number of businesses lending to the public is increasing. Once the playground solely of traditional financial institutions, lending is now seen as a significant contributor to the bottom line for a variety of different types of company. In an increasingly crowded and competitive market, how can lenders stand out from the crowd and secure customers? Leading global customer experience expert, Webhelp, conducted a survey of 500 UK adults to discover which factors influenced their choice of lender.

Overall the most important factor for borrowers was trust, with 34% stating the biggest influence on their choice of lender was whether or not the company was a trusted brand. And perhaps this is one of the reasons companies outside of the traditional banking world are gaining such a foothold in the lending space. With the ramifications of the 2008 financial crisis still being dealt with, companies with a reputation for trust in other spheres could be capitalising on the loss of trust the traditional banking industry has suffered.

But perhaps there is also another reason for the growth of the non-traditional lenders. Webhelp’s survey indicates that almost one third of people (30%) would choose their lender based on them offering a good customer experience. In fact, when you look more closely at the data, several groups rated good customer experience as the top factor that would influence their choice of lender. 36% of 18-24s and 35% of people earning £10-20k pa, chose customer experience as the number one factor in their choice of lender.

When you consider that these groups value customer experience more highly than factors such as the APR or monthly payment rates, that has to be food for thought for lenders.

David Turner, CEO of Webhelp UK, India and SA, said: “Increasingly we are seeing customer experience gaining ground as a way of businesses differentiating themselves with their customers – and this is happening across a range of industries. When margins are tight and markets are competitive offering customers reduced prices can be difficult to achieve. But as our survey shows customers do not necessarily view price as the deciding factor.

“Engaging with customers via their choice of channel and demonstrating the capability to treat them as individuals is increasingly becoming how brands are setting themselves apart and winning the all-important battle for customers. Outsourcing this vital part of the customer acquisition and retention process to an expert firm, such as Webhelp, could be what makes the difference to a business.”


Click here to see our infographic on consumer attitudes to credit in 2017