Survey: Small businesses look to banks for help in tough economy

Small businesses are looking to banks for help as the economy weakens but don’t always feel they are receiving an exceptional experience, according to a new survey by J.D. Power. The firm polled more than 6,800 small business owners and decision-makers who had relationships with larger banks. The survey found that half of small businesses were classified as financially unhealthy. Factors influencing the financial health of small businesses were inflation, supply chain disruptions and talent retention/acquisition.

Seventy-six percent of respondents said they are interested in receiving financial advice from their bank, according to the survey. Fifteen percent said they are getting “comprehensive advice” from their bank, while 27% are receiving “constructive advice” and 58% are receiving “transactional advice.” Overall customer satisfaction among small businesses that receive comprehensive advice was 858 on a 1,000-point scale, which is 82 points higher than among those who receive constructive advice and 195 points higher than among those who receive transactional advice. The biggest factors influencing small business banking customer satisfaction were trust and people, both areas where bank relationship managers play a key role of explaining fee structures, resolving problems and providing advice.