How can creative disruption shape the future?

View Schedule

Research: Traditional retail banks feeling the pressure in online search

A report released by Stickyeyes has revealed insights into how the consumer finance sector is faring online.

The Online Consumer Finance market report analysed search volume and click share, social media exposure and social media content tactics of the top 50 UK consumer finance brands in order to determine:
  • What keywords are driving online market visibility
  • What consumer finance brands are doing to achieve market share
  • How consumer finance brands are using social media
Key findings of the research include:Traditional retail banks face strong competition from a diverse range of operatorsMany of the traditional retail banks are competing with a diverse range of brands, with price comparison sites such as MoneySupermarket and Compare the Market at one end of the spectrum, and supermarkets Tesco and Sainsbury's offering the same types of products as high street banks. Rapid growth of pay day loan search volumePay day loans search volume has been the fastest growing market, increasing by 218 per cent since 2008, with the single biggest increase occurring in 2011. The record level of growth has resulted in a significant increase in new entrants, making the marketplace one of the most hard fought in terms of top ranking positions in Google. This has resulted in some companies, such as PayDayExpress, Wonga and PayDayPower, seeing huge volatility in their search positions. Even consumer finance giant MoneySupermarket has recently dropped off page one for the key volume terms.MoneySupermarket is the only brand which features in the top ten for all markets analysedMoneySupermarket is the only brand to achieve the broadest search term coverage and is especially prominent in high volume markets such as car insurance, mortgages and loans. The above graphs show MoneySupermarket had the highest result in the click share index for the ten most visible websites for loans, and also topped the click share index for car insurance. Social media remains an underutilised marketing channel within the online consumer finance marketPrice comparison site Compare The Market leads the way when it comes to integrating an effective social media strategy as part of a wider marketing campaign. With a score of 71 out of 100, Compare The Market was the top performing brand in the social media score index. The index measured the usage and quality of social media engagement across the top 50 consumer finance brands analysed. In contrast, very few traditional high street retail brands are utilising social media to develop a two way dialogue that stimulates both volume of discussion as well as the quality of engagement. Paid search (Google AdWords) is the primary route for many retail banks as they find themselves hedged out of the natural Google listingsPaid search is a key channel to market for many retail banks and financial lenders. The increasing market dominance of price comparison sites and other new market entrants has required the larger financial brands to increase their marketing budget to achieve high levels of online visibility. Insurance and loans keyword markets dominate consumer finance searches onlineWith over 69 per cent of all search impression volume coming from the insurance and loans keyword markets, high levels of exposure within these markets is critical to success. The dominance of insurance and loans is underpinned by high search impression volume for keyword markets such as car insurance (22 per cent), pay day loans (21 per cent) and loans with 12 per cent. Search impression volume was analysed across the varying keyword market types – current accounts, savings, loans, pay day loans, car insurance, travel insurance, home insurance, life insurance, mortgages and credit cards.The above graphs show car insurance takes the biggest share of search impression volume in the market, and insurance has 36 per cent of search impression volume in the market.To request a free copy of the full report, email

Join us, it's free.

Become a member to get access to:

  • Exclusive Content
  • Daily and specialised newsletters
  • Research and analysis

Join us, it’s free.

Want to read this article and others just like it? All you need to do is become a member of The Drum. Basic membership is quick, free and you will be able to receive daily news updates.