It seems bigger doesn’t necessarily mean better, ING Direct has taught us that. The relatively new contender has taken on the heavyweights in the Australian banking industry, including the “Big Four” banks, and has emerged on top in terms of customer recommendation.

Despite its lacking infrastructure, the bank has honed its skills and provided an amazing experience whilst being almost entirely branchless. Research suggests Australians are becoming more and more comfortable banking via phone and online channels.

ING Direct, more than any other financial institution, has taken advantage of this shift and has been able to articulate a clear point of difference and value proposition.  ING Direct has tailored their experience to Australians who want a direct, largely branchless experience with lower fees, and for these Aussies it’s a perfect match.

This value proposition has been reinforced by the organisation’s ‘customer-obsessed’ culture, proving that banking over the phone and Internet can still be a personalised, efficient and rewarding experience for customers.

This is why, since starting in 1999, they’ve been able to enjoy continued and significant growth from a zero base.  Its simple approach and customer offering is part of the reason ING Direct now has more than 1.5 million customers with $30 billion in deposits and $38 billion in mortgages.

We have found throughout our studies that the secret of the various loyalty leaders is a simple one: a unique customer value proposition combined with great customer experiences. In case you’re doubtful, compare ING Direct’s NPS of 38% with the average category score of -6%, and then again to the category’s lowest scoring financial institution which recorded a score of -20%.

It is ING Direct’s very tailored, very planned, and very attentive experience that has them leading the industry in satisfaction. This small powerhouse has a lesson to teach all the banks, it’s one you may have already heard us preaching in previous blogs: differentiation is key. ING Direct is largely branchless, it is direct and it has lower fees. That’s all folks! Nothing else behind this curtain! It’s this sheer simplicity that has it leading the banking industry in satisfaction. It’s clear, succinct and deliverable, and that’s all you need.