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What Are the US Tech Types Shaping Modern Banking?

Diebold Nixdorf and NielsenIQ have jointly announced the findings of their “Motivations in Modern Banking” report, which surveyed 12,000 consumers across 11 countries; including the United States.

As banks continue to transform due to digitalisation, increasing competition, regulatory complexity, and the Covid-19 pandemic, keeping track of how consumers’ needs and behaviors are changing remains critical to any transformation strategy.

The results of the “Motivations in Modern Banking” report will help financial institutions to better gauge how consumers are interacting with banking and technology.

By understanding these changes to attitudes and behaviours, organisations can improve their outreach, service quality and consumer loyalty, and invest in solutions that resonate with consumer demand and deliver operational efficiency.

The report uncovers five “Tech Types”: distinct financial consumer segments, each with a unique set of motivations, desires and expectations around banking technology.

While local representation of the Tech Types varies country by country, each segments’ distinct motivations and patterns remain consistent and entrenched. The following is a breakdown of the various Tech Types and their representation in the U.S:

  • Simplicity Seekers (31%) represent the largest consumer segment in the U.S. This Tech Type manages risk by avoiding unnecessary complexity and not relying on others, resulting in a demand for technology-driven banking services that follow the principles of simplicity and self-determination.
  • Guarded Explorers (24%) crave human reassurance and will lean towards technologies with a human touch.
  • Struggling Realists (19%) find financial management to be a challenge. Only 34% of the U.S. sample claim to have a good understanding of financial topics. Hence, they crave financial security and appreciation.
  • Established Traditionalists (18%) perceive change as a risk. This Tech Type prefers to stick with long-standing habits and will only adopt technologies as they become widely accepted and safety-proofed.
  • Empowered Self-Starters (8%) are an elite segment expecting hyper-personalisation. About 82% of U.S. members of this Tech Type are open to share more personal information in exchange for more personalised services and offerings. 
Özlem Yilmaz-Daniel, Consumer Insights Team Leader, NielsenIQ
Özlem Yilmaz-Daniel, Consumer Insights Team Leader, NielsenIQ

Özlem Yilmaz-Daniel, Consumer Insights Team Leader at NielsenIQ said: “Companies used to just look at gender and age, maybe financial state, and make their assumptions on what services would be most suitable for a customer. That is not enough to speak the same language. Think of their life stage, their beliefs and values, their habits and attitudes; these do not adhere strictly to certain ages.”

Simon Powley, Head of Advisory Services and Consulting, Diebold Nixdorf
Simon Powley, Head of Advisory Services and Consulting, Diebold Nixdorf

Simon Powley, Head of Advisory Services and Consulting at Diebold Nixdorf, added: “For banks to truly understand how to cater their technology experiences to their consumers, they must understand the ‘Why’ – the motivations that drive what consumers crave from their banking experience. Those banks that can understand these motivations will improve outreach and service quality, win higher loyalty, and focus investments on areas where they will make the biggest difference.”


  • Tyler is a fintech journalist with specific interests in online banking and emerging AI technologies. He began his career writing with a plethora of national and international publications.

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