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How banks can improve customer experience

Customer experience is a concept that attracts a lot of attention in many businesses across the board. Consequently, every sector is now focusing on delivering an excellent customer experience, and the financial industry has not been left behind. Statistics show that approximately 84% of businesses that emphasize enhancing the customer experience have seen an increase in revenue. Similarly, another 92% of companies have witnessed a rise in customer loyalty.

Given the above figures, it is essential to ask yourself what your customers in the banking sector want for an enhanced user experience. Besides, you also must deliberate on the course of action to take to deliver it to them.

What Banking Customers Want

Digital transformation has played a role in changing the rules of the game in the banking sector. While large established banks used to be the bedrock of the financial industry, they now struggle to cultivate consumer trust. To illustrate, a 2019 survey by the American Banker and Reputation Institute Survey bank shows that public perceptions about top banks are slipping.

Further, customer perceptions are changing, and banks that want to survive must keep up with the trends. In this light, reliable surveys reveal that customer expectations are straightforward and include:

  • Personalization: customers are looking for services tailored to meet their unique needs. Undoubtedly, personalized services are one significant reason why customers switch from one financial institution to another.

  • Ease and simplicity: gone are the days when the delivery of financial services was a long and complex process. Currently, the average person interacts with their bank up to 17 times a month. As such, complicated or outdated legacy systems will only create friction in service delivery. Consequently, banks will lose their customers if they fail to keep up with efficient technologies in service delivery.

  • Education and guidance: customers want transparency in the banking process. Most importantly, they want to feel empowered in their choices while interacting with their banking institution.

How to Meet Customer Expectations for Enhanced Customer Experience?

With the above customers’ expectations in mind, how can banks improve customer experience?

As the business world is making the transition to becoming a digital world, banks can be innovative in customer service delivery. Fortunately, there’s no shortage of opportunities for banks to innovate and enhance the banking customer experience.

Here are three approaches banks can use to improve customer experience:

1. Develop an Omnichannel Customer Experience

It’s easy to assume that banking is on a trajectory to becoming entirely digital. However, statistics show otherwise. According to Reuters, 60% of American consumers would still prefer to open a new account at a physical bank branch instead of using digital channels. Additionally, 86% of customers intend to visit a physical bank branch in the future. Moreover, there is an apparent desire for face-to-face human interactions.

This is not to say that banks should shelve the need for a digital strategy. Instead, the statistics point to the need to blend traditional and digital components for a truly omnichannel customer experience.

In another survey, respondents listed omnichannel experience as one of the critical areas that banks need to improve. Accordingly, banks and credit unions must continually build their channel capabilities for 24/7 seamless access to banking across all channels.

Unfortunately, providing accurate and consistent information across channels is one significant challenge for banks. Yet, they have no choice but to improve in this area for the best banking customer service. Banks should also consider providing multiple communication channels like:

  • Live chat
  • Chatbots based on artificial intelligence (AI)
  • Phone
  • SMS
  • WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger
  • Social media
  • Contact form or email

All these communication channels cater to different customers who prefer some forms of communication over others.

2. Provide Self-Service Opportunities for Customers

Customers are becoming more self-reliant. For example, certain digital services like Amazon, Netflix, and Google have made it possible for consumers to get what they want, when they want it. Whether they are looking for a product or changing the settings on their account, the ability to do things for themselves is both convenient and efficient. Furthermore, it delivers a sense of self-empowerment.

This resonates well with the impact the current COVID-19 pandemic has had on the banking industry. To explain, it has limited in-person interactions and in-branch service, causing customers to adopt mobile banking.

Surprisingly, many banks are yet to embrace great self-service support, leaving customers with no option but to call or head to a branch. Worse yet, some end up giving up on what they are trying to achieve.

Banks can change this by providing self-service portals and support content across all online platforms. In fact, in a world where everyone seems glued to their smartphones, the benefits of mobile banking and self-service portals are untold. The financial services industry should leverage this opportunity as effectively as possible.

As a result, they will witness improved customer conversion, customer satisfaction, and customer retention levels. This is especially important when customer support departments are unavailable for customer engagement.

3. Use Digital Signage to Enhance the Bank Customer Experience

The use of digital signage can help banks deliver breathtaking customer experiences. Likewise, it can promote a closer and more mutually satisfying relationship between the customer and the bank. For example, in traditional banks where queues are likely to be long, digital signage can help alleviate the perceived wait times. Through digital signage communication, customers can know the approximate time they have to wait.

Equally, interactive digital signage can also stand-in for a bank’s information desk in the lobby. By comparison, digital signage can be a source of the information people need about banking services and products. Besides, it frees up staff to provide more personalized services to customers. This way, more people can benefit from the bank’s expertise.

Similarly, digital signage provides a platform for banks to offer financial literacy to their customers. At a time when there is stiff competition in retail banking, targeted financial education can open new opportunities in the untapped populations. 

For example, create content about different financial products and the application process for each. Additionally, you also want to inform your customers how they can benefit from those products. With each piece of content, strive to be the trusted financial advisor your customers can trust. Most importantly, think of small businesses and startups that want more financial insights for business profitability.

Finally, you can use digital signage to bring their customers’ surroundings to life. Various forms of signage can transform otherwise unimpressive spaces into beautiful environments. Think of:

  • ATM screens that deliver focused and targeted messages
  • Community boards that provide a collective resource inside a bank
  • Welcome displays that orient customers to a bank
  • Front-of-building signage displays that engage customers as they approach the bank

Without a doubt, there is much you can achieve through digital signage when thinking of how banks can improve customer experience. However, all this is not possible without doing it the right way. That is why you need an expert for professional digital signage services.

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