Matt Sanders, banking expert at Gocompare.com commented on the news that Barclays is to move four of its branches into ASDA stores;
“The news that Barclays are due to close and attempt to relocate branches will naturally raise the eyebrows of some customers and shareholders.
“It’s important to remember that Barclays aren’t the first banking organisation to experiment with alternatives to traditional branch-based banking. Online-only banks, most notably First Direct, have become increasingly popular as have smaller institutions such as Metro Bank. The face of banking has dramatically shifted over the past decade and vast majority of customers have become accustomed to the flexibility of banking at home, or on their phone. However, if supermarket-based branches can deliver more convenient opening hours for those who work weekdays, as well as increasing the ease of access for customers by utilising supermarket car parking, then maybe customers will be inclined to visit their branch on a more regular basis.
“It remains to be seen what the Barclays customers will think of the move or whether the UK will embrace supermarket based banking like the US has. However, if the move does prove to be a popular one, then we can expect to see more big name bank branches next to the checkouts, which will surely put supermarkets which offer a range of banking services, like Tesco in the dilemma of choosing between giving floor space to a rival bank or creating physical branches for their online banking services.”
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