Nearly 2 in 3 Prime customers say they’d be willing to try a free online Amazon bank account.
Amazon users could be sold on banking with Bezos.
Nearly two in three Amazon Prime customers (65%) say they would sign up to try a free online Amazon bank account with 2% cash back on purchases through the e-commerce site, according to a recent Bain & Co. survey of 6,000 U.S. consumers. Meanwhile, 43% of non-Prime Amazon customers said they’d be willing to try the account, and 37% of people who don’t use Amazon said the same.
Those who were Amazon banking-curious tended to be on the younger side and earn slightly more, according to the Bain survey.
The survey came months after the Wall Street Journal reported in March that Amazon was “in talks” with firms like JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Capital One to create a checking account-style product for Amazon customers. The product, talks of which were still in “early stages” last spring and didn’t involve Amazon actually becoming a bank, would be targeted toward younger people and folks without bank accounts.
And Amazon appears well-positioned for a foray into finance, Bain’s report suggests: Survey respondents gave the Jeff Bezos-led juggernaut a Net Promoter Score of 47, in contrast to their score of 31 for regional banks and 18 for national banks. (The Net Promoter Score measures consumer loyalty.)
While Amazon’s score of 47 lags well behind frontrunner USAA’s 79, wrote Bain partners Gerard du Toit and Aaron Cheris, “the threat from Amazon is real and imminent.”
“Moving into basic banking would not only save Amazon on interchange costs, but also give it more direct influence and insight into customers’ finances and spending, rather than having banks as the intermediary,” they wrote. “The bank account could become a platform for a whole new range of services for a company that already has enormous reach among America’s most valuable banking customers.”
The survey, they noted, indicated that Amazon customers control around three-quarters of U.S. household wealth, and Prime users control about 45% of it.
Amazon-branded checking accounts would further increase the company’s ubiquity in the lives of consumers, who already bark commands at Alexa and binge-watch Prime Video originals. Amazon has also acquired Whole Foods, begun opening brick-and-mortar Amazon Go stores, and reportedly embarked on a health-insurance venture with J.P. Morgan and Berkshire Hathaway.
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