In today’s interconnected digital world, it seems every facet of our lives has been transformed by technology.
Ordering most services – like transportation – can now be accomplished via one’s smartphone.
A few taps and your groceries could be waiting for you at your doorstep. A few more, and a car could be dispatched promptly to pick you up.
These new methods of convenience aren’t just for novelty’s sake, either. Having fundamentally redefined how we interact and conduct business, they’re here to stay.
Even business and commerce have been remodeled and revolutionized by the digital age. Because of internet-based connectivity, it’s actually possible to manage one’s finances without ever visiting a traditional brick-and-mortar bank branch!
However, despite this radical transformation by mobile tech, the service industry still seems to place value on human interaction. In-person banking still exists, due to the surviving demand for quality customer service.
A bold, innovative new app may be able to replace archaic, redundant bank practices with near-instantaneous digital processing – like depositing a cheque, for example. But, at least for the current moment, it cannot hope to mimic or replace customer service at the hands of a fellow human being.
Still, here are a few ways mobile banking can make managing your finances easier than ever.
Digitally Liberate Your Wallet: Apple Pay and Google Wallet
If you do any online shopping, chances are you’re probably familiar with digital wallet services like Google Wallet or Apple Pay.
Arguably popularized by the rise of PayPal, these services make online transactions easier and more secure. Once authorized payment info is added by the user, funds can be drawn directly from their bank account or credit card into the digital wallet.
From here, the user can then make online purchases using their digital wallet instead of submitting their bank or credit card details directly to an online retailer.
The whole process might seem redundant, but there are a few key advantages to using e-wallets.
For one, no unencrypted payment information is shared with the vendor or online retailer. The payment is directly handled by PayPal or Apple Pay, for example.
Using these services also removes the need for manual payment re-entry each time a user wants to buy something.
While this might only seem like a mild convenience at best, most online users actually have very little patience for overly complicated checkout processes!
In 2016, Baymard found that 27% of surveyed buyers abandoned checkout for this exact reason.
Skip The Line – Book Meetings Online
While mobile banking does make managing your money easier, it can’t offer you relevant advice or help you with your taxes.
Even though nearly 75% of Canadians do their banking online, sometimes you can’t replace the value offered by banking appointments.
“There are customer segments who value the customer experience associated with familiar faces and working with people you know,” said Connor Crawford, President of The Southern Bank in Birmingham.
“While certain banking products lend themselves to automation, other products such as those pertaining to commercial banking and wealth management perform best with the deeper level of interaction found in branch banking relationships,” Crawford stated.
Thankfully, technology can help you arrange a sit-down meeting with a bank associate or financial advisor.
With the help of mobile apps, it’s easy than ever to secure your appointments online. Most banks offer a simple way to get in contact with their staff for all manner of questions and concerns.
On the flip side, if you work in the banking world and need a way to manage your appointments with clients, a banking scheduler might fit the bill.
Yocale offers the convenience to allow retail banking associates to provide their customers with the ability to book and schedule their next bank meeting using Yocale’s powerful and free scheduling software.
Chequing Without The Pen & Paper
While some newer finance innovations like cryptocurrency and digital wallets might take a little longer to be fully embraced by the general public, others have quickly become standard practice.
According to American bank Discover, 38% of people who use a mobile device to access their accounts have used their phone to deposit a cheque in the past year. Because most modern smartphones are equipped with high-quality cameras, this typically works by allowing users to submit mobile snapshots of their cheques as formal deposits.
While impressive, that statistic doesn’t even cover the vast amount of people who are using online technologies like e-deposits and automatic bill payments.
Interac, one of the largest providers of e-deposits (also referred to as e-transfers), claims to have processed more than 436,000 transfers per day in 2016. And according to analysts, this number will only climb higher.
What’s even more interesting is that in the same year, 70% of Interac e-transfers notifications were received on a mobile device – evidence of an increasingly mobile-driven future for banking.
Mark O’Connell, President and CEO of the Interac Association, certainly has his eyes on what may lay ahead.
“We know Canadian consumers and businesses value the convenience and security of Interac e-Transfer today – and will no doubt find value in new enhancements that we’ll bring to market in the coming months,” stated O’Connell.
Despite the enthusiastic global adoption of mobile banking, the trend does open up customers to the genuine threats of online theft.
Just recently, ICBC clients were receiving fraudulent refund notifications via text message. Although appearing legitimate, the attached link would then take them to an illicit page asking for their banking information.
This practice is nothing new in the online world, where scamming and thievery often runs rampant.
ICBC was quick to denounce the texts as illegitimate, but for some unfortunate few, it may have been too late. They may have had their funds withdrawn or spent at the hands of unidentifiable hackers.
Thankfully, many banks offer features like loss protection in events like these. And as online banking evolves, new standards for security are established, helping to defend the accounts of millions of people across the world.
While the future of brick-and-mortar branches remains unclear, one thing is certain. As times change and needs change, the banking world will make change accordingly.
For more business strategy – online and off – keep up with us here at the Yocale blog, five days a week.