Tink, Europe’s leading open banking platform, reveals research finding that an estimated 40% of people in the UK would like their bank to offer tools to track their environmental impact.
Based on a survey of over 2,000 UK consumers and 113 senior retail banking executives, the research highlights the opportunity for banks to play a bigger role in helping customers on their sustainability journey.
An estimated 37% would like to see their bank do more to help them reduce their environmental impact. The research suggests 32% specifically want their bank to provide an overview of their CO2 emissions from transactions across all their bank accounts in one place.
However, despite clear demand for tools to help them manage their environmental impact through their bank, research finds just 17% of banking customers are actively using them – suggesting a gap between appetite for and adoption of these sustainability related services.
Insights from Tink’s survey of banking executives suggest an explanation for this mismatch – revealing that currently just 24% of banks are offering customers tools to help them understand their carbon footprint based on their spending.
However, encouragingly, research shows a further 40% of banks report that they are currently working on delivering this service to their customers – with half saying they are making use of a fintech partnership to do so. Furthermore, 30% of banks say they would like to offer tools to help customers track their carbon impact, but currently have no plans to do so.
While this paves the way for a higher number of customers to access the carbon tracking tools they want, it also suggests there is an opportunity for banks to do more to make customers aware of these tools as they become available.
Tasha Chouhan, UK & IE Banking Director at Tink, commented: “It’s great to see such high numbers of customers wanting their banks to help them to make more sustainable choices, and even better to see that many banks are already starting to deliver on this demand.
“For the forward-thinking banks who are already offering carbon tracking tools, now is the time to ramp up customer engagement to ensure people know how to easily access these tools. Those who do will be in a strong position to deliver on expectations and win loyalty from both existing and new customers.”
While many banks recognise the importance of helping customers on their sustainability journey, findings suggest that not all banks are backing this up by investing in the opportunity. While it’s encouraging to see in Tink’s research 51% of banks are planning to maintain investment or invest more in sustainability related tools for customers, a significant proportion (46%) are planning to invest less or stop investing altogether.
Those who do not prioritise their sustainability offering risk losing out to banks who are already delivering these tools to consumers, with over a quarter (28%) of customers saying they would switch to a different bank if it allowed them to see the environmental impact of their purchases.
Chouhan continued: “It is vital that banks don’t miss the chance to compete on their sustainability proposition and in turn, foster better engagement with their customers. Thanks to technology offered by fintech partners, banks who may be further behind can quickly catch up by seamlessly integrating sustainability-based features into their offering.
“But there’s a bigger prize to be won here. By driving the uptake of these tools to help customers better understand and manage their carbon footprint, we have an opportunity as an industry to play our part in creating a more sustainable future for everyone. Which is why we collaborate with climate engagement solutions like ecolytiq, to make it simple for banks to plug in sustainability services and meet their customers’ needs.”