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Qatar Banks Deliver High Satisfaction Rates Across GCC, Says New KPMG Report

Qatar’s banks received the most positive feedback from consumers according to a new social media analysis of sentiment in the GCC banking sector.

The GCC banking sentiment index was a collaboration between auditing firm KPMG and DataEQ, an analytics company.

It reviewed over 3.9 million social media posts between May 2022 and April 2023 regarding 20 banks across Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Qatar, Bahrain and Kuwait.

“Understanding consumer sentiment in the GCC’s banking sector is a complex, multifaceted undertaking, which has brought to light key areas of significance for consumers and banks alike. The data-led insights gained through this report not only reflect the past year but will likely serve as a critical metric for brands aiming to evolve their strategies in a consumer-centric direction,” Abbas Basrai, Partner and Head of Financial Services at KPMG Lower Gulf said.

Saudi Arabia accounted for 83.3 percent of the total online conversation regarding banking in the GCC region. However, Qatar emerged as the clear leader with a net sentiment score of 7.8 percent.

Net sentiment is a metric that calculates customer satisfaction by subtracting negative sentiment from positive sentiment weighted by conversation volume.

Qatar’s financial success

Qatar’s high score was attributed to “favourable financial performance and the introduction of much-anticipated remittance services,” the report said, highlighting new capabilities for instant money transfers to India which appealed to expatriate residents. Collaborations to enhance cross-border payments were also highlighted.

“Social data offers organisations an unfiltered view of what consumers really think about them and their competitors. With the rise of social media usage as a servicing channel, specifically in the banking landscape, these platforms house an untapped data pool that can be structured and analysed in real-time, providing valuable insights into customer experience, product, pricing, and conduct feedback,” Melanie Malherbe, Chief Commercial Officer at DataEQ, added.

While the UAE had the highest proportion of positive mentions at 21.1 percent, this was only 0.9 percentage points above Qatar.

Praise for UAE banks centered on “successful partnerships, strong financial performance, corporate social investment initiatives and customer service.”

Major complaints seen across all GCC countries included service issues, app downtimes and long wait times, the report said.


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