The entry of new players, such as Fintech, and proliferation of technology continues to disrupt the retail banking industry. Customers are increasingly adopting digital products and services, which makes augmenting customer experiences the need of the hour. In the pursuit of quicker processes and innovative approaches, traditional retail banking companies are enthusiastically investing in digital transformation and FinTech collaboration. Furthermore, emerging technologies such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, and Digital IDs have taken the front seat with banking sector companies under pressure to boost revenues and reduce costs, while delivering better customer experience. For the global banking sector, 2018 could be a pivotal year in accelerating the transformation into more strategically growing, technologically modern, and operationally agile institutions. This could enable banking sector companies to maintain market leadership in a rapidly evolving ecosystem.
Here are the top retail banking trends that you need to watch out for in 2018:
Enhanced customer experience
Though retail banking companies have been talking about ‘customer-centricity’ and ‘improving the customer experience’ for decades, most organizations face difficulty in breaking down product silos or leveraging internal data to deliver a contextual digital experience. Retail banking companies can attain long-term sustainable growth only with a radical departure from a sales- and product-obsessed mindset to one of genuine customer centricity, and further rationalization of strategies to target the right markets, customer segments, and solutions. In 2018, we can expect more retail banking companies to emphasize on customer experience and creating better customer journey.
Expanding the use of data and advanced analytics
This year, forward-looking retail banking firms will apply advanced analytics and AI to increase automation, reduce costs, improve personalization, enhance the customer experience, and assist with compliance. Banking sector companies will embrace more automation and AI-powered capabilities to provide a better customer experience across digital channels and to empower employees with the tools and knowledge they need to improve their performance.
Retail banking firms and their customers will see less of each other in 2018. Instead, an increasingly digital customer base will use self-service touchpoints as the first point of contact, only reaching out to contact-center agents or branches for the most complex engagements. This movement of transactional interactions to digital channels means that branch and contact-center interactions will become crucial than ever in building human relationships with customers.
Growth in fintech partnerships
Earlier, banking companies regarded fintech firms as a threat owing to the growing inclination of customers toward fintech. However, forward-thinking retail banking companies are slowly realizing that collaboration with fintech companies is the way forward. By joining hands with fintech firms, banking sector companies can leverage the benefits of advanced technologies used in fintech. This will help garner and retain more customers in the long run. Also, by collaborating with retail banking companies, fintech players will get enough capital funding for their operations. Hence, this would result in a win-win situation for both the parties.
Today, blockchain is no longer merely about bitcoin or the broader category of cryptocurrency; it’s an exploded view of the underlying technology. Blockchain technology will be used more extensively in the banking sector in 2018. This technology will eventually transform the way we transact. Retail banking companies can use distributed ledgers for the sharing of contracts, documents, data and the processing of certain payments.