Online Banking Gains Canadians’ Interest

October 18, 2004

A new study by comScore Media Metrix Canada finds that online banking continues to be a widespread and growing industry.

The number of Canadians banking online grew from 8.7 million in May 2003 to 11.8 million in August 2004, a 36% increase. Currently, 64% of all Internet users in the country have visited banking Web sites.

HSBC experienced the greatest growth in the number of unique visitors with a change of 88.3% from August 2003 to August 2004. ING Group’s visitor numbers also expanded by a large relative margin, with a 55.4% growth in the one-year period.

Overall, men make up a slightly higher percentage of visitors to bank Web sites than women, but the gender picture varies significantly by bank. For instance, 53.6% of ING Canada’s visitors are male, while 52.9% of Scotiabank’s visitors are female.

The banks do vary greatly in terms of the income level of their visitors. ING and Royal Bank both bring in over 25% of their visitors from households with annual income over $100,000 (US). TD, on the other hand, only counts these more affluent households as 16.6% of their visitors.

Historically, Canadian households have done more online banking than US households, and this pattern will continue for 2004. eMarketer estimates that 43.7% of US online households will engage in online banking in 2004, a rate already well below that of Canadian online households in 2003.

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