Who are ING Financial Services LLC's three major competitors and how are they differentiated from product and brand positioning perspectives?

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Who are ING Financial Services LLC's three major competitors and how are they differentiated from product and brand positioning perspectives?

In terms of market caps and total U.S. domestic deposits, in addition to multiple sources that stated their opinions of who the top competitors are, the three major competitors of ING Financial Services, LLC are J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America, and Wells Fargo. While each of these competitors and ING Group offer many of the same products and services to their customers, each of them also have some major advantages and disadvantages over one another, which will be discussed below. Analyzation of the major strengths and weaknesses of each competitor will primarily be used to compare with ING Group. A brief analysis of ING Financial's branding and products will be provided first, and then used as a comparison for the main competitors.

ING Financial Services, LLC.

According to ING's own website, the main goal of the company is to "provide smart, reliable and sustainable products and services to build and protect financial futures." The company has worked to enforce this motto, especially since 2009, whenever they made it their goal to go back to the basics by separating their banking and insurance activities. This process has made it possible to strengthen relationships with customers, in addition to enhancing marketing strategies that focus on conveying the quality and trusted services that are offered. For the most part, ING uses federal banks in each respective region that they operate in, to ensure better processing and handling of client profiles.

STRENGTHS
ING Financial Services, LLC has a unique brand name and is currently in good financial standings as a company. They offer joint ventures on a global scale, and are considered to be one of the top leaders in asset management products that they offer to customers. The most popular services that are offered and utilized by customers of ING Group are wholesale and retail services, which are not as widely offered among competitors. In terms of the brand's logo, which is a lion, many seem to take this image as evidence that the company physically exists and is there for its customers.

WEAKNESSES
In comparison with its competitors, ING Group is small, with around 100,000 employees worldwide. However, due to the intense nature of their major U.S. competitors, their profits tend to fluctuate as customers switch between banks or choose offers from other locations. In addition, ING faced a major controversy revolving around the freezing of pension funds for up to a year, which heavily hurt the brand image on a global scale.

JP Morgan Chase & Co.

STRENGTHS
JP Morgan Chase & Co. is considered to be one of the top major competitors of ING according to multiple sources, including one that mention the market shares of JP Morgan Chase and market caps. In general, the company focuses their efforts on providing quality service across the entire range of the products offered, through innovating methods and at exceptional prices. JP Morgan Chase & Co. is known for their brand visibility in B2B connections, and are also considered to have excellent customer service in the retail network. They are considered to be the largest U.S. bank in terms of sales, market value, assets, and profits, and they also have a 174% ratio of deposits to loans. The company prides themselves on offering competitive pricing and low interest rates on loans, which they vary depending on the services provided. JP Morgan Chase focuses their efforts on customer satisfaction, and is especially skilled in long-term investments for world-class franchises. The brand's largest area of profit comes from asset management services, which are expected to bring in over $102 trillion by 2020.

WEAKNESSES
Perhaps the greatest downfall of JP Morgan Chase & Co. is their over-dependence on the United States market. 65% of their total revenue comes from the U.S., which causes major issues whenever the economy fluctuates. In addition, the company has faced billions of dollars in fines, many of which are due to security, mortgage, and banking issues, which has inverse effects on their customer retention ratios.

Wells Fargo

STRENGTHS
Wells Fargo's company slogan, "Together we'll go far" is widely known and acts as a message to customers about the company's goals as a financial institution. The financial company is especially focused on providing a diverse array of products and services to a diverse crowd of customers on a global scale. With over 280,000 employees worldwide, Wells Fargo is considered to be the second largest bank in terms of deposits, home mortgage servicing, and debit cards. These are their most widely used products and services. When it comes to pricing products offered by Wells Fargo, the company is known for altering their interest rates and fees based on customer needs, and also works to research industry and competitor rates before setting a general standard. They offer the widest array of products over most other financial institutions, including investing and brokerage, specialized lending, and real estate.

WEAKNESSES
While other companies heavily focus their efforts on customer satisfaction, in spite of Wells Fargo's attempts to utilize fair rates and fees, the company is considered to have low customer care and satisfaction rates. Much of this is heavily due to the discrepancies faced in the past two years regarding fake accounts and the associated fees with this legal issue.

Bank of AMERICA

STRENGTHS
As of 2016, Bank of America had the highest percentage of the financial industry market, with a total of 10.73% market share. The company is considered to have excellent customer service, and has customers in over 150 countries worldwide. Their net margin is 25.58% higher than major competitors, and they are noted to have relationships with 99% of the U.S. Fortune companies. Bank of America is especially skilled in providing innovative products and services that are tailored to customer needs. Many of their clients are upper-middle income customers, utilizing products and services such as investment banking and asset management.

WEAKNESSES
Bank of America has faced issues relating to credit controversy, resulting in a poor brand image to the public. In 2014, when the company sold toxic mortgages to customers, they were subjected to around $17 Billion in fines. The company has also struggled with constant competition from other banks that are attempting to take over some of their market share by providing lower rates to customers.

Conclusion

Based on total market shares and comments from multiple analyses regarding popularity and customer opinions, the above three financial institutions are the top three competitors of ING Financial Services. Each of the three competitors are facing their own version of public scandals, which are having inverse effects on customer retention and preference. While each brand attempts to market to customers regarding their priority for customer service, Wells Fargo seems to fall short on this account, even though they provide the widest array of products. JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America are more known for providing quality services at fair industry prices, in addition to quality customer service.
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