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The Case for Getting Branches Out of the Red

The Case for Getting Branches Out of the Red

Branch Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategies need to be overhauled or branches will continue to underperform. Overall branch network performance assessments are disappointing, both from a financial and a consumer perspective.
By Randi Purchia

Boston, MA, October 9, 2006 – According to new research, Aite Group predicts that unless bank branches refine CRM strategies and focus on the customer segments that want a relationship with their branch, too many branches will continue to underperform and will remain in the red. Across the United States, approximately one-third of branches in bank retail networks are operating in the red. Research also indicates that a majority of bank customers are dissatisfied with branch services.

Despite a substantial increase in the number of branches across the United States, the retail banking network will fall short of its profit potential in 2006. One-third of the country's branches are not meeting their economic/market potential, and only one-half are moderate performers. Banks, unfortunately, are not sufficiently tailoring their strategies to each branch's particular market potential.

Aite Group's latest Impact Note highlights the importance of focusing on those customers that want a relationship with their branch and building customer trust by strengthening core processing systems.

According to Randi Purchia, Senior Analyst at Aite Group and the author of the Note, "While greater automation and improved CRM technologies help branches become competitive, it is the quality of each branch's staff, location, and focus on branch-centered customers that ultimately enables profitability. Too much fee and interest income is being left on the table, especially in urban areas."

This 12 page Impact Note contains one figure. Clients of Aite Group's Retail Banking Service can download the report