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Next-Gen Customer Experience in Digital Banking: 10 Must-Have Features for 2022

Alex Malyshev

In less than a year, the lives of people worldwide changed from digital second to digital-first. Physical restrictions led to a sharp surge in online activity and mass adoption of digital banking services. Safe, quick, and convenient access to finances online became a banking feature consumers would switch banks for. 

Mastercard’s study revealed that 62% of respondents in Europe expressed interest in moving from physical banking to digital platforms in 2020. Over half of the world’s population are using banking apps more than before the pandemic and express a more positive interest in digital banking overall.

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As customers look for alternatives to traditional banking, first impressions stemming from customer experience play a big part in their decision-making. It won’t matter how good a bank’s in-branch customer service is or how attractive their fees are if a prospect can’t open an account because of a complicated and lengthy sign-up process. Currently, 9 out of 10 customers abandon applications for current accounts, credit cards, and loans. 

Digital banking research. Source: Temenos

Digital banking research. Source: Temenos

Digital banking customer onboarding: keep it short and be there for them

By motivating customers to complete their applications with a better user experience, banks can increase revenue streams and improve the bottom line. According to a Capgemini report, customer acquisition in digital banking through meaningful user journeys was already a fast-growing priority before the pandemic because customers want to experience the same convenience in banking as they do in digital lifestyle applications. 

Key challenges of the current client onboarding process. Source: Capgemini

Key challenges of the current client onboarding process. Source: Capgemini

When designing the onboarding process from a user’s perspective, it is vital to not overload customers with unnecessary information. A streamlined onboarding lays the foundation for trustful client-bank relationships.

Mobile-first experiences are geared towards touchscreen input with the minimum information on-screen minimize distractions and improve chances of a successful conversion. Saving time and hassle by pre-filling as much as possible from internal systems and never asking for the same information twice goes a long way in nurturing leads. 

Taking care of the customers’ time when building a next-gen online banking solution can prevent the three most frequent sources of leaks in the digital sales cycle:

  • too difficult switching
  • too cumbersome digital registration process 
  • lack of advice when customers need it. 

Matching the ongoing customer journey with next-generation features helps to cement customer loyalty.

So, banks need to use data and behavioural analytics to improve and iterate the customer acquisition process continuously. By identifying the friction points, where activities stall and errors occur, companies can make incremental changes to improve over time.

money managememt features

Top digital banking features to ensure unparalleled customer experience 

1. Convenient account opening in minutes

Digital self-onboarding allows customers to open a bank account no matter where they are or what device they are using. Simplifying access to banking services and reducing the time to open an account to just a few minutes makes life easier for customers and removes barriers to switching.

Next-generation onboarding consists of gathering and validating basic information about a customer, reviewing provided documents, and performing due diligence to ensure legal and regulatory compliance. This process can be completed in about five steps in less than 5 minutes by using remote review services from ID and Optical Character Recognition (OCR) to automate the document review and validation steps.

According to OneSpan.com, facilitating digital account opening is already a top priority for banks and financial institutions. 68% of respondents are actively using it in their onboarding processes. Self-onboarding not only greatly improves the customer experience, but also streamlines data collection and processing, allowing banks to allocate their resources elsewhere.

Account opening transformation. Source: OneSpan

Account opening transformation. Source: OneSpan

2. Account-to-account (A2A) payments

P2P, or peer-to-peer payments, are a simple but effective solution that allows near-instantaneous money transfers between any device. With just a few taps, customers can pay and send money to friends and family from their phone or computer. Mobile-first customers have little patience for multi-day bank transfers that do not work on weekends when better and faster alternatives work 24/7/365. Banks that offer the convenience and simplicity of instant payments can keep their customers in their ecosystem instead of losing them to payment services like Venmo.

3. Intuitive loan applications 

With an automated digital application process, customers can effortlessly open additional accounts, obtain credit cards and apply for loans. The ability to apply for any banking service with just a few clicks can improve conversion rates for existing and new financial products. Lending is a core banking service that can benefit greatly from a next-generation digital strategy.

By integrating the loan application process into a core banking system, customers do not have to re-enter their data that is already in the system. Customers can save their applications and reopen them later, while banks can monitor these leads and follow up with assistance and personalized offers.

4. Scheduled payments

Monthly and annual bills are recurring payments that take time. Automating and providing management billing tools brings a new level of convenience for both individuals and customers. By linking billers directly to bank accounts or cards, banks can give their customers the ability to centralize and control their spending through manual or scheduled bill payments. Quick access to all subscriptions with a real-time overview prevents unexpected costs and gives customers peace of mind.

As with scheduled payments, account holders can also send money from a single account to multiple recipients with bulk transfers. Business transactions, salaries and other frequent payments can be streamlined to provide customers with a fast, easy and efficient way to process bulk payments.

5. Personal digital card management

Digital card management allows banks to give customers more control over their finances. Setting up online spending limits and blocking payment cards with just a few taps adds convenience and a better sense of security. With digital card management, customers can customize their settings to match their purchasing behavior by turning contactless NFC and online payments on or off. A detailed transaction history categorized by country, merchant type and location helps prevent irregularities and detect fraudulent transactions early on.

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6. Trustworthy security

Digital banking services collect and store sensitive customer data that must be protected and kept secure with innovative technologies. To deliver a next-generation customer experience, banks and financial institutions must meet stringent regulatory data requirements and implement industry best practices. Multi-factor biometric authentication, location-based security, suspicious activity notifications, card tokenization, and predictive fraud detection systems are a must for a modern banking experience.

7. Timely notifications

With in-app alerts and notifications, customers can monitor their financial activity and protect themselves from fraudulent withdrawals and transactions. Real-time notifications of incoming and outgoing payments, low balance alerts, overdraft protection alerts and payment providers allow customers to stay on top of their finances. Each app alert is also an opportunity for banks to offer better products and services to their customers.

8. Personal Finance Management (PFM)

Banks can play an active role in helping consumers improve their financial behaviour and make healthier money decisions. PFM tools and features allow customers to plan their finances with spending and savings goals. By monitoring weekly and monthly progress with clear visual charts, clients can choose to allocate more of their income to savings or retirement accounts. Banks that help their customers make better decisions can build more trust and foster loyalty among their customers.

9. Valuable loyalty benefits

Customers feel valued when they are rewarded for their choices, such as being a member of an exclusive banking community. Reward coupons, custom cards, special offers, cashback, and referral rewards are just some of the strategies digital banking platforms rely on to reward customers for their brand loyalty. Satisfied customers become the best brand ambassadors.

10. Straightforward digital insurance

Partnerships and integrations between insurance companies and banks, known as bancassurance, are helping financial institutions expand their service offerings within their ecosystem. Personalized digital insurance packages that come with an account improve customer satisfaction while generating new revenue streams for banks. Insurance linked to a bank account streamlines the claims process and significantly speeds up reimbursement time.

SDK.finance: the proven digital banking software vendor 

SDK.financeSDK.finance new logo 2021, a white-label digital banking platform provider, has everything banks and financial institutions need to create a next-generation customer experience in the shortest time possible. The digital retail banking platform built by a team with 15+ years of experience in FinTech is available to build a neobank fully equipped to reach the new generation of mobile-first customers. 

Contact the SDK.finance team directly to learn more about what type of banking software will be perfect for your business needs.

FAQ

What are the benefits of digital banking vs traditional banks?

Offering the ability to access, use and move money via mobile devices, digital banking apps lets customers see their account balances, pay bills, transfer money, apply for loans and make purchases on the go.
Here are the key benefits of digital banking:
- lower fees
- easier access
- saving time

What are the top features for great customer experience in digital banking?

1. Convenient account opening in minutes
2. Peer-to-peer (P2P) payments
3. Intuitive loan applications
4. Scheduled payments
5. Personal digital card management
6. Trustworthy security
7. Timely notifications
8. Personal Finance Management (PFM)
9. Valuable loyalty benefits
10. Straightforward digital insurance

What are the digital services provided by banks?

- Mobile banking;
- Bill payments;
- Manage cheques;
- Monitor transaction records;
- Transfer of funds;
- Cash withdrawals etc.

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