Banking appears to be the most popular sector in South Africa

27 January 2020 2 min. read
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South Africa’s banking sector has emerged as the economic segment with the most satisfied customers in the country, while municipalities have the least satisfied customers. This is according to Consulta’s latest South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SAcsi), which surveyed 35,000 consumers across nine sectors.

Alongside banks and municipalities, which emerged as first and last respectively, Consulta surveyed consumers in the life insurance, clothing retail, supermarkets, short term insurance, mobile telcos, medical schemes and airline sectors, which emerged in the same order on the index when it comes to customer satisfaction.

The banking sector’s success on the index is likely the result of targeted efforts among South Africa’s leading banks to improve their customer experience. Recent analysis has shown that rapid digitalisation has led to a degree of uniformity in banking services across the major banks, at which point customer experience remains a core differentiating factor.

Banking appears to be the most popular sector in South Africa

Banks have been looking to develop this competitive advantage, and appear to be gaining significant ground. Capitec is the bank that emerged atop the SAcsi for major banks, while Absa recorded the poorest performance. Ineke Prinsloo, a Senior Client Executive at Consulta offers some insight into the reasons behind this distribution.

“One only has to look at the meteoric rise of the likes of Capitec and TymeBank’s achievement of 1 million account holders in less than 8 months, as well as the continued decline of some iconic brands to realise that competitor gaps and market leadership positions are being eroded much faster than ever expected,” she said. 

“The ones who are winning are those who put true customer centricity at the absolute core of every process and function within the business, rather than simply paying lip-service to it,” added Prinsloo. Zooming out, Prinsloo did acknowledge the overall dampened sentiment across sectors, brought about by challenging economic factors.

According to Prinsloo, South African businesses have had a double whammy of sorts, having to contend with global disruptive trends such as digitalisation while simultaneously operating in a stagnating economy. In such a scenario, she asserts that smaller and more agile challengers with less of a legacy are better suited to navigate present market challenges.