When it comes to credit cards, customers cannot get any satisfaction from high street banks, voting supermarkets as the best in this field, new research shows.
According to the latest credit card Customer Satisfaction Survey by uSwitch, the supermarket giants are leaving the big banks behind, although the fact remains that 30 per cent of credit card customers remain dissatisfied with their credit card provider.
There is less choice in the credit card market since the financial crisis threw a spanner in the works, with products being withdrawn, rates risen, and credit limits cut, but the number of people using their credit card still saw a four per cent rise in the last month compared to 2007.
The research has revealed a growing void in customer satisfaction between the best and worst of the bunch, widening to 22 per cent, highlighting the importance of comparing credit card deals to get the best one.
But despite the potential savings to be made by choosing the most competitive card, 50 per cent of credit card customers have been with the same provider in excess of five years, and more than a third are clueless about whether or not the rate they are getting is competitive.
Louise Bond, personal finance expert at uSwitch.com, said of the research results: "Tightened lending criteria and consumer cutbacks have prompted many to loosen the reliance on their flexible friends. However, for many, credit cards will remain an invaluable way of smoothing out any peaks and troughs in personal income."
Ms Bond explained that consumers are increasingly using credit cards not only as a financial lifeline but also to make the most of their spending, opting for deals such as rewards credit cards, and cashback credit cards.
Therefore, the incentive of rewarding customers with supermarket points is proving popular among customers.
But, Ms Bond would like to see all credit card providers improving their customer experience. She said that "it's disappointing that customer service is still letting the card companies down, and the huge gap between the best and worst providers shows just how different one customer's experience can be to another's."
Ms Bond recommends that consumers compare credit card deals from across the market to ensure they are getting the best deal and to move providers if they are dissatisfied with the service they are receiving.
"In the current climate more than ever, savvy consumers need to make sure they are taking matters into their own hands and finding the best deal for their individual needs," she added.
© Fair Investment Company Ltd