HSBC (2)

Small businesses in the UK could save millions after HSBC have announced a review of its banking tariffs for business customers with a turnover of up to £2 million.

The proactive review will ensure businesses are on the most appropriate and efficient tariff, saving small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) over £13 million a year in charges.

HSBC’s Electronic Banking Tariff (EBT), which is now available to customers with a turnover of up to £2 million, is designed for customers who prefer to manage their banking via digital channels, and was previously only available to businesses with a turnover of £500,000 or less.

To ensure customers take advantage of the change, HSBC is also reviewing its small business customer accounts to confirm their current tariff best suits their banking behaviour.

In cases where customers would benefit from a change, HSBC will automatically move them to a new tariff. An estimated 190,000 HSBC customers are set to benefit from the revised tariff threshold and account review.

Ian Stuart, UK head of commercial banking, HSBC, said: “The way that SMEs bank is changing in much the same way as they do business – it’s going digital. We continuously speak to and listen to our customers to find ways for us to improve our Business Current Account proposition, this review will ensure that we support more UK businesses as they grow and navigate their way through the post-Brexit landscape. While this comes at a cost to the bank, we believe it’s the right thing to do for our customers.”

The tariff review is supported by new online SME research findings from YouGov, which reveal that businesses across the UK are turning to digital technologies to ensure the sustainability of future growth.

The research found 41% of SMEs believe efficiencies created by digital technologies are an important part of their businesses future and 36% will become more reliant on technology in the next year.

While 41% of SMEs have grown total revenue in the last year, almost half (45%) say that their current service suppliers have failed to support their business as their requirements change, whilst 42% also say they have not changed their service agreements in the last year, suggesting that a significant proportion of British businesses are not operating in the most effective manner.

Mr Stuart added: “As our customers grow, naturally their focus shifts to other parts of their business and they don’t always have the time to prioritise reviews of existing supplier contracts. In some cases this means their initial product or service doesn’t meet their existing or future needs.

“We understand that business needs change over time, which is why we have proactively reviewed our business customers’ tariffs to better support their growth.”