Magazine article American Banker

Women to Be Driving Force in Web Banking, Study Says

Magazine article American Banker

Women to Be Driving Force in Web Banking, Study Says

Article excerpt

A recent study suggests that banks should get ready to welcome increasing numbers of women to their Web sites.

The study by NetSmart America, a New York marketing company, found that women are 58% of "newbies" -- people who have less than one year of experience on-line.

As they become more accustomed to using the Internet, their use of on-line banking is expected to surge. By 2002, 60% of all people on-line will be women, NetSmart America predicted.

"This is a wake-up call for bankers," said Bernadette Tracy, president of NetSmart America, which interviewed 1,000 people who spend an hour or more per week on-line, excluding e-mail. "Women are going to be the leading force in on-line banking."

The study also found that more women are making on-line purchases. This year 55% of men and 46% of women made on-line purchases. Last year the gender gap was more a pronounced 51% to 37%.

People who have made electronic purchases are primed for Internet banking because they appreciate the convenience of on-line services and have been introduced to security and navigation issues, said Leon Majors, research director for on-line financial services at PSI Global, a Tampa-based research firm.

The survey results point to a large upside to tailoring on-line services and marketing campaigns to women.

Some banks have already heard the message.

First Bethany (Okla.) Bank and Trust is aiming services specifically at women business owners. …

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