According to a recent survey, mobile apps have exceeded online banking as the most popular choice for UK consumers to manage their finances.

The study, sponsored by Smart Money People, a financial services review website, revealed that 39.2% of customers would rather use smartphone applications to deal with banking transactions. The figure is a significant rise from the 30% recorded in 2017.

Only 38.6% of people said they would rather use online banking as their preferred choice, down from the 45% recorded in 2017, placing it below the rank of banking apps for the first time. 

The study also highlighted the fact that the popularity of digital channels – used both for mobile applications and online services – has increased from 75% to 78% during the past 12 months. 

The study goes into detail regarding the different age groups which were being surveyed. A clear analysis of the investigation reveals that applications are most popular among the 18-24 age group (53%), as one would expect. Those aged 65 and over on the other hand, only accumulated to 13%. This figure is still well above the 2017 data – almost double – indicating that the use of digital channels is becoming increasingly popular even in elder communities. 

66% of participants over the age of 65 were reported to have chosen digital channels as their preferred choice, up from the 61% in 2017, marking the largest rise since the survey was launched. 

According to the founder of Smart Money People Mike Fotis: “We know that digital channels are constantly growing in importance, but this is the first time that apps have overtaken online banking as the most popular banking channel.

“It’s a timely reminder that every financial services firm needs to offer an excellent app-based user experience, and that digital banking needs to be on every brand’s radar.”