Today’s post comes from our partner, Apiture®, a leading cloud-native provider of digital banking solutions.
Virtually every industry is being disrupted by technology as consumers are driving a new frontier in digital innovation. Disruptions can take many forms but materialize when innovators find ways to better serve their customers: taxis have been all but completely replaced with ride share apps like Uber and Lyft, and even doctor visits have been disrupted by specific diagnosis care apps, enabling patients/customers to get prescriptions without leaving their home.
Consumers hold more power than they realize when they choose to engage with a company on its digital platform. When it comes to digital banking, that power looks like choosing to use a bank’s or credit union’s online or mobile application to complete a banking transaction (like paying a friend) or abandoning the app for a third-party service (like Venmo). Abandonment is a symptom of a customer experience that has fallen behind consumer expectations. When a user can find an easier or more appealing solution for their digital transactions, the bank or credit union should be looking internally for what they aren’t providing. In the age of digital technology, it all comes down to experience.
Mobile-first experience is most attractive. It’s why 63% of U.S. consumers said they were more inclined to try a new digital app for banking than they were prior to the pandemic. Mobile preference is outpacing traditional online preference. In fact, 68.1% of all website visits in 2020 came from mobile devices and only 32% came from desktop and tablet combined.
When it comes to a mobile-first experience, there are a few heavy-hitting principles to keep in mind:
- User Experience (UX): Mobile experience must meet customers’ expectations, and every innovation or new service sets the bar even higher. A mobile-first strategy provides the flexibility for any given app to transcend user needs, redefining what it means to provide service on mobile platforms. This doesn’t just mean the look and feel of a mobile app, it means an all-encompassing mobile experience including customer support like chatbots with automated responses, contextual on-screen messaging, or digital access to live customer support.
- Mobile serviceability: How does a bank know what services are working for their users and what services fall short? The data available with digital services is vast, yet so many banks are unable to utilize this data to understand trends like when users are most active so support staff can be online, how long users are active on a process that shouldn’t take much time, or when users give up and abandon a process in the middle. Harnessing data with an analytics solution and using those insights to make better product and service decisions, banks can keep their app relevant and usable for their users.
- Partner for best-in-class solutions: In some cases, services can be partnered – taking the load off banks and enabling them to take advantage of innovative digital solutions. Partnering with a third-party person-to-person payment solution, for example, gives users access to services they know – housed within their primary financial institution, which they trust. Banks and credit unions must find digital banking partners who are willing and able to seamlessly integrate partner solutions into the mobile banking experience.
Customer experience is make or break. Despite the change in adoption trends and preference trends, there is no replacement for effective customer support. Regardless of channel, customers will require help and support, or might otherwise abandon an activity they find troublesome. Users need support when they are active within a process, so building support directly into the User Experience is no longer a “nice to have,” it is an expectation. Banks that recognize the need for innovative support services, that meet customers where they are, will maintain and grow their community.
It’s easier than ever to attract new business through digital channels, but it’s also just as easy to lose out. The pandemic brought a new wave of users to the digital forefront and failing to accommodate these new digital preferences can hold businesses back from a new wave of adoption of their products and services. Understanding user needs empowers digital investments and finding the right ways to support that user experience is just as important as the new investment itself.
Apiture is a leading cloud-native provider of digital banking solutions. Apiture provides FIs with the integrations, capabilities, and resources that banks and credit unions have not had access to in the past. Offering two differentiated digital experience platforms, Apiture Xpress and Apiture Open, Apiture has developed innovative solutions that can be used by financial institutions of any size. Apiture products currently serve over 400 financial institutions within the United States market. Apiture is headquartered in Wilmington, North Carolina, with offices in Austin, Texas. For more information, please visit www.apiture.com.