As smartphone’s like Apples new iPhone X and Samsung’s Note 8 have become ubiquitous, seismic shifts are taking place in the way people bank and make payments.
Citi surveyed more than 2,000 Americans in its inaugural mobile banking study to discover how mobile technologies are shaping consumer behavior. The findings point to a transformational shift, as consumers mobile bank an average of 7 days per month – and 10 days per month for millennials. And the latter is a trend we’re seeing at Citi with millennials comprising almost 40% of Citi Mobile App users.
So, in this mobile age, where exactly are consumers banking and what features do they view as essential?
Consumers are checking finances everywhere, from the bar to the bathroom
Nine in 10 individuals are banking from home, logging on from the couch, the bed, their desk and even the bathroom. Elsewhere, 44 percent are banking at work, while 31 percent of millennials are mobile banking when socializing. Instead of having to consciously pencil in a visit to a branch, consumers are independently monitoring their finances on their own time via regular, quick mobile account check-ins.
It’s not just greater convenience that consumers gain from this technological change, but awareness as well. It may have been an unintended side effect of mobile innovation, but the accessibility of financial information has armed consumers with more data at their fingertips to make financial decisions.
In fact, 7 in 10 Americans who are mobile banking more than once a week say they are more aware of their finances than those who do so less than once a week (49 percent). And, 65 percent of mobile banking users are very confident they know the exact balance of their bank account, compared to just 53 percent of non-mobile bank users.
As a result, consumers are feeling more connected and in control of their financial standing than ever before.
A high-functioning app can breed stronger consumer loyalty
At the heart of the mobile banking transformation lies an enhanced customer experience. And for consumers, customer experience is synonymous with digital experience. Institutions that understand this, and respond by investing in technologies to improve app functionality, will undoubtedly increase customer loyalty and retention.
The numbers say it all. Users of high-functioning apps (88 percent) say they are more likely to stick with their bank over the next 12 months compared to users with low-functioning apps (70 percent).
But what does a high-functioning app entail? More features, at least five, and usability.
Consumers are specifically looking for easy deposit and withdrawal options, faster access to their balance, and choices for transferring money. Having better budgeting tools also enhances their overall view of the digital experience.
By bringing traditional in-branch experiences – and more – to the consumer with the swipe of an app, banks can now proactively anticipate new features to resonate even more with consumers. And, they’ll be rewarded with enhanced consumer satisfaction.
Keeping pace with financial transformation
The explosive adoption of the smartphone – accompanied by the increase in time-starved, multi-tasking consumers – precipitated the rise of mobile banking. Nowadays, consumers are managing their money wherever and whenever they please, becoming more financially aware and encouraging banks to get innovative.
As consumers latch on to the latest mobile banking features, being on the cutting edge to offer fresh updates is not an “if” for banks — it’s a must to keep consumers engaged. Those that can deliver superior customer service through tailored, high functioning next-gen digital experiences will pull ahead with a financially aware and loyal consumer base.