Infographic: Mobile banking coming up from behind

In October 2012, more consumers did their banking the old-fashioned way (by telephone and mail) than the high-tech way (by smartphone or tablet). Now, for the first time, mobile banking has inched ahead of phone and mail in popularity, according to the American Bankers Association's annual survey of preferred banking methods.

The survey of 1,000 U.S. adults, released October 2013, found that mobile banking is now the preferred banking method of 8 percent of customers -- up from 6 percent in 2012. That 30 percent increase helped it edge out telephone calls (down to 7 percent from 9 percent in 2012) and snail mail (down to 7 percent from 8 percent in 2012) as a means of managing bank accounts.

All these methods are small pieces of the pie, however, compared with Internet banking (accessing bank accounts from a PC or laptop) and visiting a bank branch. The latter is still the preferred method for those who need assistance with more complex transactions, such as opening a new account or discussing loan options, according to the survey.

The chart below shows preferred banking methods for U.S. adults. The poll, conducted in July 2013 by Ipsos, had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

Mobile banking overtakes phone and mail

See related: Consumers prefer mobile banking to mobile payments, More infographics

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Updated: 01-19-2019