The latest forecasts from research consultancy Aite Group show that by 2010 13% of current accounts will be opened online in the US, compared to just three per cent in 2006.
Aite Group recommends the leading online banking channel vendors should progress beyond software applications and offer value-added services, such as online marketing outsourcing, to remain competitive.
The survey of 21 of the top 50 US banks (measured by number of chequeing accounts) found that the number of accounts opened via the Internet will grow steadily over the next few years, from three to four per cent between 2006 and 2007, and from six to nine per cent between 2008 and 2009 before reaching 13% by 2010.
According to the report, the top performer among the banks surveyed says they are currently sourcing about 20% of new chequeing accounts online with the next highest performer currently sourcing 13%.
The lowest performer in the survey is sourcing 0.03%, says Aite.
Gwenn Bézard, a research director with Aite Group, believes that as competition for online customers grows banks will need to further invest in multi-channel marketing.
"Beyond mastering the account opening process, banks will need to become considerably more effective with online marketing," says Bézard.
"By leveraging online customer data, conducting targeted online and multi-channel marketing campaigns, banks will be well positioned to leap frog the competition."