Beauty and the brain: delivering valuable experiences in banking

Banking anytime, anywhere, anyhow. But how?

Aesthetics are one thing, brains another. One to entice, the other to function, but both are needed to survive.

The financial industry convened in Geneva for one of the largest annual financial services conference, Sibos, to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the sector over the year to come, 24/7 banking, as a response to the need for a consistent, valuable customer experience, was often raised.

It’s a simple concept: banking anytime, anywhere, anyhow. Sure, it requires a lot of work – but banks are becoming quite used to this response by now – and investment, but there’s a need to remember that any strategy here should be two-headed.

The front-end of an institution should be eye-catching, dynamic but easy to navigate. It should reflect the culture that bank is known for, and be careful not to over complicate an interface in today’s aesthetic of powerful simplicity.

The brains, or back-end, are even harder to master, of course.

First, organizations need to understand the manner of their customers’ interactions across mobile, tablet and laptop, and be realistic that most will use all three, and more, interchangeably.

With beauty and brains, banks will deliver a truly seamless and integrated experience for their customers and create a consistent experience across all devices. As a result, they will be able to retain and attract new customers, providing them with better value and a far more enriched experience.

However, amid the disruption from digital upstarts, banks are increasingly nervous about customer loyalty.

Improving customer loyalty is essential to reducing the possibility of people switching to a different banking provider. Better communication, creating a sense of urgency around the importance of a connected experience - so that it is both consistent and valuable to the audience - acts as a perfect antidote to switching.

Millennials in particular have higher expectations and expect the same convenience from their banking as their other digital services. So it’s even more important banks have the capabilities to excite these customers at every opportunity, within both front-end and back-end experiences – even if there is an assumption that the agility of digital banking makes it easier to change banks despite the evidence showing most customers are still too apathetic to switch.

Apathy aside, the financial industry should not become complacent with habits of customers: beauty and intelligence are subjective, and continually evolving with the customer. Want more insights like this? Discover more insights from Sibos in the full report.