There are some surprising findings in a major ranking of credit cards by Australian consumers, including the provider of the nation’s most popular card.
Topping the 2018 Australia Credit Card Satisfaction Study, compiled by global customer insights firm J.D. Power, was Bendigo Bank, which scored 773 on a 1,000-point scale of customer satisfaction with credit cards.
American Express came in a close second on 753 points, followed by Bankwest (728).
Interestingly, supermarket giant Coles ranked fourth (on 724 points) for its branded credit cards – beating all of the major banks and easily eclipsing rival Woolworths (690 points).
National Australia Bank – which this week left its home loan rates on hold despite the other majors and many other lenders hiking them in recent weeks – was the highest ranked of the big four banks, coming in fifth on the list with 717 points.
The lowest ranked card provider, HSBC (657 points), was more than 100 points behind the leader.
The full list, which is based on feedback from 4,642 Australian credit card customers, is below. The average score was 710 points.
But the ranking also showed plenty of room for improvement by all card providers. Of chief concern was the finding that the overwhelming majority (89 per cent) don’t fully understand the terms and conditions of the card they are using.
“Despite the need to understand what they have signed up for, just over one-third of cardholders were proactively contacted by their issuer in the last 12 months,” said Anthony Chiam, head of financial services practice at J.D. Power.
“Cardholders not only appreciate when [the terms and conditions] are communicated in language that is easily understandable, but also prefer to speak with someone directly when they have a problem with their card or card activity.
“Card issuers therefore need to focus on their outreach to cardholders as well as on their customers’ preferred channels of interaction.”
Other clear areas for improvement include more focus on the customer and delivering value in the cards’ rewards program (one in four said the value of rewards program has decreased, with 21 per cent of these citing this as spurring them to change card providers in the year ahead).
Overall satisfaction rating of credit cards in 2018
- Bendigo Bank – 773 points
- American Express – 753 points
- Bankwest – 728 points
- Coles – 724 points
- NAB – 717 points
- BankSA – 714 points
- Commonwealth Bank – 711 points
- Latitude Finance; Suncorp – 709 points
- St. George – 708 points
- ANZ – 699 points
- Westpac – 696 points
- Bank of Queensland – 694 points
- Woolworths – 690 points
- Citibank – 675 points
- HSBC – 657 points
Source: J.D. Power
Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the publication’s editorial direction since early 2016.