A report released by Google India suggests that one of the largest private sector banks in India, HDFC Bank, is also the most searched banking brand on the internet among users in the country. The data in the report covers the time period from April 2011 to March 2012.
The data also reveals that among insurance service providers, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) came out as the most searched insurance brand. Similarly, it was ICICI Direct which was the most searched investment (brokerage) firm on the internet among Indian users.
The report is a compilation of Google search trends in India and an autonomous research report by TNS Australia on the effect of internet in the purchase of financial instruments.
Reportedly, India has about 137 million people who regularly use internet, with a considerable proportion of them (99 million) being urban population with high incomes. According to the Google India report, with such a large number of urban users of internet, financial institutions need to be innovative and engaging to appeal to the digitally savvy customers.
On the matter, Mr. Ranjan Anand, the Managing Director and Vice President (Sales & Operations) of Google India said, "Given the reach of the Internet to high-value customers and its influence on the decision making for financial products, we believe that financial services can create significant value by innovating on the digital medium. Financial services should look at adopting an ‘online first' approach to serve the needs of the digitally savvy customers."
The report also mentioned that among internet users of financial products, the highest numbers of searches were made for loans, such as home loans (75%), personal loans (73%), followed by insurance products (life insurance - 69%, auto insurance - 70%).