The ath Power Small Business Digital Banking Study

Many of today’s small businesses seek greater efficiencies and productivity at each stage of their businesses’ growth. Even during the early phases, time-constrained customers need 24/7 and real-time access to their business accounts. At the same time, a major challenge for today’s financial institutions is to balance the disparate needs of micro-businesses and other small and mid-sized businesses.

This study covers the emergence of small business digital banking, the term many institutions and FinTech partners are using to describe the convergence on online and mobile banking as part of a broader business banking strategy. Digital banking is growing and is being adopted at financial institutions of all sizes. These institutions understand that a well-planned and executed digital banking strategy can differentiate their solutions, reduce attrition, improve the customer experience, and deepen relationships.

A common discussion topic posed by banking leaders is identifying precisely what small business owner want from digital engagement and channels solutions, and how they wish to be served. To better respond to this important shift, financial institutions are working hard to find the solutions that best meet the needs of all small business banking customers, no matter how they access their account information.

Increasingly, these time-constrained leaders lean toward the use of technology for day-to-day transactions, but desire personal interaction when considering guidance on such topics as cash flow and business lending. In reality, technology and touch need not be mutually exclusive, rather they can be used in harmony to meet the varying needs of today’s small business owners.

The ath Power Small Business Digital Banking Study offers a unique look at the small business digital banking market, as it is rich in voice-of-the customer data and information about their wants, needs, and behaviors in a wide variety of topics in digital banking and payments. Our in-depth view of the small business market provides the information needed for financial institutions to engage more deeply with business customers in this important market while increasing retention rates, profitability, and shareholder value.

Purpose of The ath Power Small Business Digital Banking Study

The ath Power Small Business Digital Banking Study is a one-of-a-kind, detailed assessment of customer usage and intention, product and service offerings, delivery methods and customer experiences within the small business digital banking line of business. This study includes deep insight on digital banking features are of interest, and what needs to be done to deliver the customer experiences that will ultimately increase acquisition, improve retention, and drive revenue in this important market.

ath Power designed this study to help financial institutions within the marketplace:

  • Uncover the important role that digital banking solutions play in enriching the banking experience for busy small business owners.
  • Discover what digital banking features are of great interest to small business banking customers, and their satisfaction with their current experience.
  • Find out what gaps in the service experience would deter a potential small business digital banking customer from bringing their business to a bank or credit union.
  • Obtain valuable information that can help target strategic sales and service initiatives within the small business digital banking arena.
  • Gain the strategic insight needed to achieve a dominant position in the important small business digital banking market.


During February 2017, 441 small business owners (SBOs) responded to an online survey composed of questions designed to identify factors that determined satisfaction with their digital banking experience, and to uncover impediments to delivering a desirable experience. Of the 441 respondents, 327 identified themselves as current mobile banking users. Through this evaluation, SBOs provided information about their current digital banking behaviors, the features and functionality they value or would like to see added, and an assessment of their current digital banking experience. Approximately three-quarters of respondents (77%) reported annual revenue of up to $1,000,000 in 2016, while 17% reported revenues between $1,000,000 and $4,999,999, and 6% reported revenues $5,000,000+. Over eight-in-ten (82%) correspond to the Baby Boomer (45%) or Gen-X (37%) demographics. Roughly 12% of respondents are Millennials.

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If you are interested in obtaining a customized competitive analysis for your own institution, please contact Kevin Nixon via email at or call  +1.978.474.6464 Ext. 138.