In an age when tech giants have made online and mobile processes fast, easy, and enjoyable, community banks and credit unions face the challenge of meeting the same high standards of customer experience expected by their accountholders. A global study found that more than 50% of consumers want an omnichannel banking experience – the ability to seamlessly switch between physical and digital channels – and 61% of “digitally-centric” consumers are more likely to stay with their primary bank or credit union compared to 55% of “branch-centric” consumers. The COVID-19 pandemic has only increased the importance of digital channels and the need for banks and credit unions to differentiate themselves from competitors.
To improve customer experience and loyalty, community banks and credit unions must think differently about how they engage with their accountholders and anticipate their current and future needs. This includes offering a range of delivery channels, personalizing experiences, and proactively addressing customer pain points. In this article, we will explore six tips for reimagining customer experience in the banking industry.
Tip 1: Securely engage with accountholders through digital banking
Personal service has always been a key differentiator for community banks and credit unions, but in the digital age, this means bringing live, local service to accountholders through digital channels. Fully authenticated, real-time messaging capabilities, such as Banno ConversationsSM, can help banks and credit unions securely engage with accountholders at their moments of need. By integrating personal service into digital channels, banks and credit unions can provide a level of convenience that meets the expectations of digitally-savvy consumers while also differentiating themselves from tech giants and other financial institutions.
Tip 2: Provide quick and intuitive digital account opening
Digital account opening is a critical aspect of customer experience, but the average abandonment rate for digital deposit account applications is more than 50%. To improve the process, community banks and credit unions can focus on simplifying the application process, providing clear instructions and guidance, and offering assistance to customers who may need it. By making digital account opening as easy and enjoyable as creating a Netflix or Hulu account, banks and credit unions can improve customer satisfaction and increase conversion rates.
Tip 3: Offer personalized service and recommendations
Personalization is key to improving customer experience and loyalty. By gathering customer data and using it to provide personalized service and recommendations, community banks and credit unions can demonstrate their understanding of their accountholders’ needs and preferences. Techniques
Tip 4: Enhance the online banking experience
Online banking is a crucial component of customer experience, and it’s important for community banks and credit unions to offer a range of features that meet the needs and expectations of their accountholders. This includes account aggregation, budgeting tools, financial education resources, and other features that can help accountholders manage their financial lives more effectively. In addition, it’s important for banks and credit unions to optimize the mobile banking experience, as more and more customers are using their smartphones to access their accounts. This may include designing a user-friendly mobile app, providing mobile-specific features and services, and ensuring that the mobile banking experience is seamless and secure.
Tip 5: Use data and analytics to improve customer experience
Data and analytics can be powerful tools for improving customer experience and loyalty. By collecting and analyzing customer data, such as through customer surveys, focus groups, and analytics tools, community banks and credit unions can gain a deeper understanding of their accountholders’ needs and preferences. This can help banks and credit unions identify customer pain points and target their marketing efforts to specific segments of customers, resulting in more personalized and effective communication.
Tip 6: Train employees on customer experience best practices
Employees play a crucial role in improving customer experience and loyalty, and it’s important for community banks and credit unions to invest in employee training programs that focus on customer service skills and best practices. This may include customer service skills training, coaching, and role-playing, as well as ongoing support and development for employees. By empowering employees to provide excellent customer service, banks and credit unions can improve customer satisfaction and build customer loyalty.
In conclusion, customer experience is a critical factor for community banks and credit unions looking to compete with tech giants and other financial institutions. By proactively anticipating and personalizing interactions with accountholders, offering a range of delivery channels, and using data and analytics to improve customer satisfaction, banks and credit unions can enhance their customer experience and build customer loyalty. By following the tips outlined above, community banks and credit unions can differentiate themselves and meet the high standards of customer experience expected by their accountholders in the digital age.