As more banks move away from traditional banking methods and toward digital services — 47% of which have already begun the process and an additional 34% plan to develop a strategy here soon — user experience becomes a substantial component of improving your customer's journey. In banking, the customer journey is crucial to competing with large Fintechs and neo-banks. User experience is the key to reaching and resonating with customers throughout their journey.
This is because user experience determines whether a customer will ever work with you again. In fact, some research has found that 88% of consumers wouldn't return to a website they had a bad user experience on, while another 13% would tell others about the bad experience. On the other hand, 72% would tell six or more people about a good experience.
Which way your customers will go on this topic depends on the efficiency of your user experience services. To optimize your digital banking, here's our expert advice on improving your customer's journey with user experience services for banking.
Now that financial institutions are turning to digital banking and mobile banking, you need to be familiar with user experience (UX) and its growing importance in the banking industry to remain competitive. The banking user experience (UX) refers to a customer's thoughts, emotions, and behaviors towards their experience with your bank at every touchpoint. Banking UX design refers to developing your customers' experience with your digital product/service to make it easier and more pleasant to navigate than traditional methods.
A great digital banking UX design will be user-friendly, accessible, inclusive, time-saving, educational, and problem-solving. By creating a UX that allows customers to take advantage of digital opportunities without the hassle of jumping through hoops, you will be in a better position to attract and retain customers.
Although it will grow and get significantly more in-depth, a few notable factors in a UX design strategy for banking include:
The importance of listening to customers — primarily through customer insight and feedback — should never be underestimated. Not only does it improve customer satisfaction and lay the foundation for building trust, but it allows you to approach banking with user-centricity (making your user's needs the main focus).
As Sam Walton, an American businessman and entrepreneur, once stated, "If you don't listen to your customers, someone else will."
Arguably the most important reason to listen to customers is that they won't hesitate to leave your bank for one that will. One study reported that 46% of bankers 55 and younger said they would switch banks if presented with an option that offered digital features that suited them better. However, this scenario can be avoided by listening to customers through user research and understanding the features that best improve their experience.
A customer-centric approach does what it sounds like: it puts the customer first. This means that, although implementing one digital initiative versus another may be cheaper or easier for you, it only matters if the customer perceives the feature as a valuable asset to their experience. Otherwise, you'll most likely lose the customer anyways, so it doesn't matter that the feature or intuition was more affordable to deliver.
Your digital banking experience can be the make-it-or-break-it of your bank and its future in the industry. Most banks are unable to succeed due to their inability to keep up with modern technology and adapt to today's customer-centric market. According to Educative, however, these five elements of user experience can help you successfully deliver a good user experience since they create the most common framework followed by UX designers.
Before you can move forward with your user experience design, you must develop the right strategy. To lay this foundation for the design, you will need a thorough understanding of:
This will require in-depth UX research of online banking users. Some research can be obtained via customer reviews and feedback on digital platforms — i.e., what 'pains' are customers currently struggling with their online banking experience with other financial institutions? How can you do better?
Then, research your current customers via surveys, questionnaires, and similar methods. What would they like to see in their digital banking experience with you?
The Scope element of your user experience design phase incorporates your design's functional and content requirements. The functional components refer to the features your customers want in their digital experience. Some good examples include:
Content components in this phase, however, focus more on bringing the experience to life for the user. This includes a common theme between your images and audio that appeals to your users and creates value. For instance, a simple but informative onboarding video could make all the difference in how well your users navigate the platform and make the most of their digital banking experience.
The structure element of the digital banking UX is next. This is where your designers will organize the behavior of your system, ensuring that the layout makes sense for the user.
For instance, an onboarding video that explains all the ins and outs of your digital banking platform should be front and center when a user creates an account. A video/text that goes more in-depth about each banking feature should not be ahead of onboarding or introductory information. Instead, it should be organized into its own category so users can quickly click on features that matter most and access the best ways to leverage those features in their experience.
Two essential components of this element are:
The bones of the operation are in the skeleton phase, where designers are putting together all the moving parts of your user experience. This is when they'll determine your digital platform's flow of information and ease of movement from page to page or feature to feature. The key to this element of user experience is to:
In the final element — the 'surface' element — the banking UX designer brings all the features to the surface to present a holistic view of the operation. Each step required separate attention to each component to ensure every aspect of the design was optimized to its full potential for the user. Now it's time to put it all together and ensure that the user experience with your digital banking product/service is seamless and cohesive. This includes the final surface of your design that the user will interact with, such as typography, colors, styling, images, navigation, etc.
Now that you know the elements of designing the ultimate digital banking user experience, we must discuss what customers want in a digital platform for all their banking needs.
First and foremost, digital banking users expect quick access to help when banking online. This is because it's a new environment for most bankers, and any bump in the road — particularly one that is due to not receiving 24/7 customer support —could deter them from exploring this new avenue with your bank.
Recent research found that businesses have reported wait times for consumer help as the reason they lost 75% of their customers. They've also revealed that it only takes 14 minutes before customers stop waiting and move on.
Another critical component of a good user experience is easy navigation. Every user should be able to go from page to page or bank account to bank account without any hassles. Since digital banking has become such a big hit because of its convenience and fast nature, easy navigation is essential because it allows users to reach their destination faster. It also encourages them to explore all of the features your online banking product/service offers, boosting their confidence in user experience and building loyalty in the process.
Ways to improve your navigation may include:
Creating personalized experiences is mandatory in banking or any industry if you want to succeed. Customers are no longer staying with brands that don't customize user experiences to their needs and preferences. In fact, a McKinsey & Company study revealed that as many as 71% expect personalized interactions from companies today, and another 76% are frustrated when those companies don't meet their expectations for customized user experiences.
Most financial institutions are implementing more personalized experiences for their customers by collecting consumer data from their digital platforms and responding appropriately. One study that can be useful in determining what consumers are looking for in their digital experiences found that bank customers are interested in the following:
Customers consider having relevant features and functions essential to a good user experience. Your bank needs to know your target audience well enough to modify your features to their unique needs so users don't encounter any issues where their needs aren't being met.
For inspiration, Forbes found that the following features and functions are the most valuable to bankers:
On the other hand, the report found that the following were only somewhat enticing:
These views differ from customer to customer, so your banks must consider your target audience when determining the best features to deliver on your platform.
The biggest fear of digital banking is security. The safer your customer's experience is with your bank online, the better their user experience will be. Since most breaches and fraudulent activities result from poor user behaviors, educating your users on how they can do their part to keep their banking information and accounts safe can be beneficial. This can include providing informative topics on stronger passwords, not accessing banking information on public networks, and keeping banking notifications on in case of any suspicious activity.
Being open and honest about every aspect of your digital banking will help attract and retain customers. People want more transparency from brands, especially those they trust with their funds. According to one study, as many as 94% are more likely to be loyal to your brand if you're transparent, while 39% will be quick to switch to another if you're not.
Investing in your customers' emotions will produce the biggest payoffs for your financial institution. This is because people still want the personal touch of humans in the digital realm. Customers still want that same relationship and connection with your bank that they had with traditional banking. According to an academic study conducted by the International Journal of Bank Marketing, customers more emotionally involved with their bank are more loyal to their bank. The report also found that they're more likely to maintain a longer-lasting relationship with their bank, telling others about their great user experiences and encouraging them to join.
The more complex your digital banking is, the fewer customers you will have interested in using it. User-friendliness is essential to creating a platform that includes all types of customers and their financial understanding. This doesn't mean you can't have content or features that get more complex for those who are ready for it. Still, it does mean that you should have steps to get newer customers more familiar with the financial sector and how they can take full advantage of your financial products and services.
There are several ways you can create a good user experience for banking:
User experience is becoming essential in all business areas, particularly in the banking industry. Traditional, in-person transactions have always been an excellent opportunity for banks to build meaningful relationships with their customers, but times are changing.
Most (more than 75%) American consumers prefer to do their banking digitally. This means banks must find a way to adapt to this new preference for banking while maintaining a strong connection with customers. The solution is to create great user experience services for banking.
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