Ranking of JD Power Wealth Mobile Apps

Investments companies are making in mobile apps are starting to pay off, but the financial advisory industry still has a long way to go.

According to JD Power, three-quarters of wealth management companies have improved the functionality of their apps in the past year, up from 44% in 2020. As a result, overall client satisfaction jumped nine points from last year (scoring 858 on a 1,000-point scale), and the number of customers using their wealth management apps daily increased by four percentage points. Customers who use their apps multiple times a day increased by three percentage points.

US Bancorp Investments ranked first with a score of 884, followed by Chase Mobile (876) and Merrill Edge (870). TD Ameritrade Mobile had the lowest score with 838.

However, wealth management still trails the industry average scores for banks (860), credit cards (867) and insurance apps (877). Other financial services sectors are simply growing faster: 33% of credit card apps and 50% of banking apps made “major feature updates” this year, compared to 31% of money management apps. heritage.

“Obviously, the investment companies have put behind their digital strategies is having a positive effect on app user experience and overall usage rates, but the same thing is happening everywhere, and some industries are just evolving more quickly,” Michael Foy, senior director of wealth intelligence at JD Power, said in a statement.

While most enterprise apps are good at delivering market-related news and information, many fail to deliver personalized content and advice, which was an important theme of Financial planning recent INVEST Connect conference. Only 51% of customers strongly agree that their wealth management app provides personalized information and content.

Businesses can also improve the user experience, with only 47% saying it’s “very easy” to research investment options on their wealth management app.

“Wealth management firms have unique challenges due to legacy back-end technology and the complexity and range of services they must provide,” Foy said.

While the attachment to legacy systems is certainly a problem for some companies, others are just beginning to feel pressure from customers to modernize their technology, said Ronnie Colvin, founder of French Press Financial Services, a Reno-based RIA. , Nevada. But with the pandemic forcing many clients and advisors to finally embrace technology, supporting mobile access is more of a priority than ever.

“In a nutshell, wealth management firms are behind the technology because their client base didn’t demand it until recently, so they saw no reason to invest the time and money,” he said. Colvin said.

However, wealth management firms have unique opportunities to improve their apps in ways that other financial services firms cannot, Foy said. They could facilitate communication and engagement between customers and their human advisors. Currently, only 44% of those who use a wealth management app and work with an advisor say they can communicate with their advisor through the app. This number is unchanged from JD Power’s 2020 study.

“The key for wealth management companies to thrive in this competitive environment is to lean heavily on their unique value propositions, which allows investors to easily and intuitively move from the app to other digital channels or human beings while providing personalized guidance and important insights along the way,” said Amit Aggarwal, senior director of digital solutions at JD Power, in a statement.

The JD Power Wealth Management Mobile App Satisfaction Study is based on responses from 3,025 full-service, self-directed investors. The study evaluates the applications on the basis of five criteria: range of services, clarity of information, ease of navigation, appearance and speed of loading times. Scroll down to see how JD Power ranked apps.