SA has a new king of digital banking – Capitec, according to Columinate’s latest Internet banking SITEisfaction survey

For the first time in six years, Capitec narrowly edged FNB to take top honours in the mobile banking category and the digital banking category as a whole.

FNB came out with a score 0,8% higher than Capitec in the Internet banking category – the only category in which the former industry leader retained its dominance.

Francois Viviers, Capitec’s Marketing and Communications Executive, says that being crowned the best digital bank is testament to the bank’s vision to help their clients bank and live better.

“Our aim has always been to design smart, simple and easy-to-use digital solutions that fit into your life, while saving you time and money. We’re both excited and grateful to our clients for scoring us so highly, securing Capitec’s position as South Africa’s best digital bank for 2017,” he says.

The results were generated from 10 000 survey respondents, with Capitec scoring 81 out of 100, while FNB scored 79, followed by Nedbank and Standard Bank with 61, and Absa trailing the field with a score of 55 out of 100.

“From a digital perspective, Capitec has always been a strong challenger to FNB and its efforts have finally paid off this year, as its customers rated their satisfaction of the bank’s service offering higher than that of its competitors,” says Columinate director and co-founder Elna Pretorius.

“While Standard Bank has experienced some fluctuations in the level of its digital banking satisfaction levels over the past three years due to various redesigns and service outages, Nedbank has yet to shift the needle as the bank continues to offer a middle-of-the-road solution and experience, according to its customers.”

While the survey noted a decrease in instances of fraud, there were more consumers falling victim of banking crimes, with five per cent of respondents falling victim to phishing scams and seven per cent who were victims of SIM-swap scams, while eight per cent fell victim to 419 scams over the course of last year.

Pretorius says there’s still scope for SA’s banks to provide wider product offerings through their digital channels to bring greater convenience to their customers, as this is what will ultimately sway consumer perceptions.

“The onus is on the banks to elucidate their customers on the threats they face when engaging with the bank online, from spoofed websites, to keyloggers, to data-stealing malware – the banks have to take responsibility for educating their customers, or at the very least, develop a product or solution that could protect these users should they fall victim to the inevitable crime – it’s not just a nuisance to the customer, or an inconvenience to the bank, it’s a practice that impacts the entire South African economy,” she says.