Forrester’s European Banking CX Index 2021: Pandemic Boosted The Importance Of Delivering Strong Digital Experiences

The shift to digital delivery improved CX scores for banks across the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, and France 

LONDON, Oct. 1, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — According to Forrester’s 2021 European Banking Customer Experience Index (CX Index™), the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the shift to banking via digital and hybrid channels — and this shift has improved customer experience (CX) across European banks. Unveiled at CX EMEA, the CX Index rankings reveal that digital channels dominated all three dimensions of CX quality — effectiveness, ease, and emotion — across Europe. Forrester’s European Banking CX Index benchmarks the CX quality of 38 of the largest and most important banking brands in the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, and France. It is based on a survey of more than 26,000 European adults. 

On average, customers rated the quality of their banking experiences as ‘good’ in the UK; ‘OK’ in Germany, Italy, and Spain; and poor in France. Across Europe, challengers (alternatives to traditional banks) and mutuals delivered better CX than traditional banks and were lauded for delivering strong customer support, digital offerings, or both. Among challengers: Monzo ranked first in Europe and the UK for focusing on financial well-being; First Direct outperformed all other European banks in the customer service driver category; and ING led in Spain for the second year in a row. The average CX quality in France remained ‘poor’ with the exception of Crédit Mutuel, BNP Paribas, and Caisse d’Epargne improving significantly from 2020 to 2021. 

The pandemic accelerated the shift toward digital banking, with 17% of French customers accessing their bank accounts on a computer for the first time and 19% of Italians using a banking mobile app for the first time. While customer preferences for using different digital channels varied by country, overall, banks’ investments in digital experiences paid off. Noteworthy highlights about digital experiences include: 

“This year’s CX Index rankings clearly indicate that banks across Europe successfully leveraged digital channels to better serve the needs of their customers,” said Forrester VP and Research Director Oliwia Berdak. “Despite the improvements in digital, the average CX quality in France remained ‘poor’. Investments in digital experiences will be helpful in the long run. What’s more, the three dimensions of CX quality — effectiveness, ease, and emotion — are not equally important. Emotion is key to differentiation; that’s why delivering customer experiences that evoke positive emotions, understanding customer needs better, resolving issues quickly, and rewarding customer loyalty should be top priorities for European banks to improve CX.” 

Forrester’s CX Index methodology helps CX leaders grow revenue faster, drive higher brand preference, and charge more for their products. It helps brands identify the key drivers of a positive CX for their customers to prioritise efforts. Even a minor improvement to a brand’s customer experience quality can add revenue by reducing customer churn and increasing share of wallet. Additionally, superior CX leads to reduced service costs and lowers the cost of customer acquisition through word of mouth. 


About ForresterForrester (Nasdaq: FORR) is one of the most influential research and advisory firms in the world. We help leaders across technology, marketing, customer experience, product, and sales functions use customer obsession to accelerate growth. Through Forrester’s proprietary research, consulting, and events, leaders from around the globe are empowered to be bold at work — to navigate change and put their customers at the centre of their leadership, strategy, and operations. Our unique insights are grounded in annual surveys of more than 675,000 consumers, business leaders, and technology leaders worldwide; rigorous and objective research methodologies, including Forrester Wave™ evaluations; over 52 million real-time feedback votes; and the shared wisdom of our clients. To learn more, visit 

Press contact: Michael Burner,



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