Emphasizing the importance of leveraging tools such as apps and platforms, online accessibility remains a vital ingredient for alternative lenders looking to grow their business, according to an analysis by loan directory Smarter Loans.
This has become especially important in a policy environment characterized by prohibitive stress tests that have pushed a significant proportion of consumers out of the market.
“The appetite for alternative lending products has led Canadians on a search for information about the options that are available to them,” Smart Loans stated in its report.
In 2018, approximately 62% of would-be borrowers used search engines rather than referrals to find their alternative lender of choice, and 60% ended up checking the lender’s website prior to applying.
Furthermore, around 46% conducted research on three to five providers before applying, and 25% entertained six or more choices. Approximately 44% relied upon online reviews to make their final decisions.
By and large, these searches have yielded great fruit, with 75% of those that applied online getting the funding they needed, and 85% indicating satisfaction with the service they received.
A defining feature of many lenders’ offerings is the promise of same-day or quick approval. Nearly 43% of respondents said that they received their loans during the same day that they applied, and 82% said that they received funds within three days. Fully 68% indicated that they “agreed” or “strongly agreed” that the application process was speedy and hassle-free.