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5 Top Features Mobile Banking Apps Should Offer

By 2021, roughly 7 billion people will be mobile users worldwide. To reach them, financial institutions must be willing for their mobile banking apps to exceed consumer expectations. There already are 57 million mobile banking users in the U.S., and their desire for self-service and personalization is rapidly changing the digital landscape of banking. With the mobile app market set to generate a revenue of $581.9 billion in 2020, now is the time for banks and credit unions to consider the latest technological offerings — from personalized experiences to enhanced cybersecurity — so they can benefit from this explosion of young, tech-savvy consumers. Here are the top six features every user wants in a great mobile banking app.

1. Simple Design and User-Friendliness

While financial institutions continue to expand their mobile experiences to include new features and content, they should steer clear of impeding users trying to complete goals. According to a Forrester paper, most banks subject customers to “fragmented experiences” by making them figure out simple tasks on their own instead of laying out proper navigational choices for them. By focusing on a simple yet intuitive design, banks help their customers with their financial goals instead of hinder them. Some good UX design elements for mobile banking apps include:

  • In-app search functionality
  • Seamless mobile to desktop experiences
  • Smart shortcuts to frequently used features
  • Clear easy-to-read dashboards

2. Sophisticated Chatbots

Just six months after Bank of America launched Erica, its AI chatbot, approximately 45 percent of Bank of America’s customers were using it. Designed to reduce the need for phone, email and face-to-face conversations, chatbots provide transactional support for straightforward tasks like balance inquiry and bank account details, but can be made even more sophisticated with AI learning to offer personalized money insights, credit score data and more. Going even further, HSBC’s Amy takes the form of a Virtual Assistant Chatbot for corporate banking at HSBC Hong Kong, providing instant support to customers’ inquiries on a 24×7 basis.

3. Personalized Experiences

Beyond chatbots, financial institutions can use data in a number of other ways to create personalized experiences for their customers. Mobile banking users log onto their apps for a variety of reasons; with the right technology in place, banks can guess what these reasons are and meet customer needs before being asked. Studies show that for every $100 billion in assets, a bank can achieve as much as $300 million in revenue growth by personalizing its customer interactions. With cloud-based technology, banks can deliver a customized experience aided by member data and predictive analytics. By learning a user’s unique habits, the technology can tailor everything from money insights to actionable alerts to meet their specific needs. This results in more engagement and overall brand trust.

4. Instant Account Opening

Thanks to mobile technology, opening a bank account no longer requires getting out of your pajamas and going to the bank in person. The best mobile banking apps allow customers to open accounts with ease on their handheld devices — or even apply for loans and investments that way. When it comes to mobile apps, “convenience” is the #1 priority for users, so if an action can be taken at a brick-and-mortar bank, it should be just as easily available as an app.

5. Enhanced Cybersecurity

Mobile app fraud transactions have increased by over 600 percent since 2015. With security being a major factor in choosing a financial institution, including mobile app security, consumers must be assured that their data is secure at all times. Beyond mobile banking platforms using encryption to protect data, banks can monitor customers with cloud-based technology to detect suspicious behavior 24/7 and provide a secure experience for users at all times. They can also provide zero downtime expectations for their users and ensure a speedy login.

Learn more about elevated mobile banking solutions at Lumin Digital.

Erica Garza is an author and essayist from Los Angeles. Her writing has appeared in TIME, Health, Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Women’s Health and VICE.