Consumers simplify finance with online accounts, study finds

Fully 25 percent of adult American consumers have attempted to open a checking account online so far in 2010, according to a recently released report from Javelin Strategy.

The report said, however, that this number actually represents a decrease from the proportions of U.S. consumers seeking to digitally open a checking account during the peak of the economic depression. Javelin researchers said that frustration with the levels of security and convenience available for these products were the primary cause of the downturn.

The report’s primary author, Mark Schwanhausser, said that “far too often the first experience many consumers have with a financial institution is punctuated by frustrating delays, offline interactions and outright rejection. Newcomers – who, in a shift from previous years, are now the largest group of online account applicants – are the most likely to abandon the process. This is a cautionary tale to both banks and vendors.”

Other reports have found demographic disparities in the relative proportions of U.S. consumers’ willingness to use online banking, with older Americans much more likely to cite security concerns.