In the banking industry, the customer must always be front and center in a banking strategy. In order to respond to consumer expectations whilst simultaneously defending market share against numerous competitors, having an edge when it comes to positive customer experiences is crucial. As technology continues to advance, investments from the banking sector are pouring into innovation and digital developments in order to meet customers’ needs and stay ahead of the competition.
As the industry becomes more strategically focused and technologically advanced, let’s take a look at some innovative methods of banking that have transformed the customer experience.
1. Bank-Branded ATMs
Cash is still king for most people around the world and these days there are more ATMs available to customers than ever before. One interesting development is the idea of bank-branded ATMs from which customers can still withdraw money even if they are not with that bank. The experts behind the ATM solution by Perativ explain that outreach to new customers is very difficult as the majority of people tend to stay with one bank for most of their lives. Trust is a huge thing in banking, and so as long as a customer doesn’t have a bad experience, they rarely switch.
Known as a proven method of increasing specific banks’ transactions and profits, ATM branding also attracts the attention of both customers who are already with that bank as well as new customers. Even though there is usually no charge, customers tend to use the ATMs of their own bank whenever they see them. If their bank’s ATM is not available, customers will use another ATM as long as it doesn’t charge them. This is a very effective way for banks to gain awareness and trust with new customers and the strategic placement of ATMs has become an exact science.
2. Contactless Payments
The progression from signing for card payments to chip and pin was a huge step forward in banking but the convenience that contactless payments have brought to low value payments has greatly improved customer experience. Especially now during the CoronaVirus Pandemic, with people trying to refrain from touching things in public, contactless payments have made purchasing items by card quick and safe.
With a small embedded chip emitting short-range radio waves, consumers only have to place the card within a close range to a contactless-enabled payment terminal, and one or two seconds later, the transaction and payment information will be completed. There are no additional fees and the security of the technology is also guaranteed in case there is any fraud that occurs. All customers have to look for is the wifi-like symbol on their card or contact their card issuer in order to find out whether their card has contactless technology.
3. Online Banking Transfers
Online transfers have made it so easy for individuals and organizations to send money between their bank accounts and to other people and businesses. Payment and transfer methods will always be the most dynamic areas of innovation in banking, as these are the things that affect customers directly. The rise in consumer expectations alongside technological advances which led to online transfers has resulted in reduced transaction fees and greater customer independence.
As banking technology continues to evolve, payments will change from a series of specific products to an integral part of customer experience and the dynamics of how and where we pay and receive payments will also evolve at the same pace. Currently, online banking transfers are the most convenient form of payment transaction, but the data from these transfers will be processed and used to deliver even better, more convenient services in the future.
4. Online Banking Chatbots
Customer service is fundamental to the banking industry, from the days when the clerks in local branches knew all their customers’ names to these days of digital self-service and internet banking. Whilst it may sound strange, chatbots have brought that personal touch back to the world of banking. With the purpose of improving customer experience, from answering frequently asked questions to facilitate core banking activities, implementing chatbots has been an essential step to take bank-customer relations to the next level. Utilizing more automation means more efficient banking operation, and a combination of bots with different functions working together has proven to be ideal for fulfilling customers’ needs.
In order to compete and grow in an industry with thin margins, fierce competition and ever-changing regulations, innovation is a top priority for banking institutions all over the world. From digitizing core business processes to reassessing structures and human resources, banks must constantly come up with new solutions that can take advantage of data and advanced technologies in order to be well-prepared for the future of banking.