Service with a smile, hot coffee and the occasional lollipop for the kiddos was once considered the height of creating a good customer experience in the banking industry. The banking process itself – the lines, the forms, the back-and-forth of showing ID and signing names was accepted as sometimes arduous, but necessary. Technology, however, has impacted the ease and speed at which business is done – including banking. Online bill-pay was just the beginning of what analysts correctly predicted to be the next transformative stage in banking – leveraging emerging technologies to make monumental improvements in customer experience.
What’s next? 47% of responders to KPMG’s 2014 Banking Industry Outlook Survey pointed to changes in customer focus, buying patterns and preferences as the top driver in their own business transformation over the next 3-5 years.
So what do customers really want, and how is the banking industry embracing technology as a response? Customers have become used to the environment created by leading retailers that allow them to shop when they want, where they want. They want a streamlined experience, they want to be catered to, they want to leave a cart and come back to it later; all with the promise of fail-safe data security, of course.
How is banking responding to customer demand for this streamlined retail experience?
Switching from a Multichannel to an Omnichannel Approach
Banks know they have some customers who prefer never to visit a brick-and-mortar branch to do their banking, some who will only bank face-to-face, and others who prefer a little bit of both. Banks are responding by switching from a multichannel approach where information was once held in silos to an omnichannel approach that includes integrated, interconnected systems that can be accessed, updated and added to from anywhere.
Adding Emphasis on Mobile Applications
Not yet mobile? Gotta get there. Mobile already? Customers want more. The shift to mobile banking and banking applications has turned the customer experience on its head. Mobile banking is affording customers all kinds of conveniences that not only make a customer’s life easier, but make that bank top of mind over any other. For example, a customer gets to the grocery checkout stand and can’t find the debit card they wanted to use. The solution is simple, use their bank's mobile banking app to move money from one account to the other quickly without having to leave the store. The app just saved the customer face and time while boosting that bank’s customer loyalty points 100%.
Focusing on Value-Added and Self-Service Options:
One thing the world values as much as money is time. Banks that are able to use technology to save their customers time are way ahead of the customer experience game these days. Here are just a few ways technology is being applied in the banking industry to save customers time:
- Automated teller machines are taking in stacks of deposits vs. one check at a time. No more long lines at the tellers, no envelope to complete, and best of all, customers are given automatic totals and digitally-captured photos of each check.
- Customers of banks using digital platforms vs. paper files are allowing customers online and mobile access to every piece of digital data related to a bank transaction. They can look at transactions, print out receipts, provide proof of income, check the status of a home loan and much more – by themselves, securely and at their own convenience.
- Banks that have the ability to tap into customer data digitally are also leveraging data analytic solutions to come up with value-added offerings for individual customers – adding the possibility of increased ROI for themselves and continued customer loyalty and engagement.
It’s hard to believe that picking a lender or moving an investment has become as easy as buying a book, but it has, and it makes customers happy. Even happier than that lollipop.
Find out how DocuPhase can help you embrace technology to improve your customers’ banking experience.