Are the challenges for mobile banking really those we expect? Tapping into the real potential of mobile banking

Digitalization in the banking sector has been going on for a while. Banks are trying to move away from tellers and branches to online interactions. And rightly so: the cost of a phone interaction is 40 times superior to that of an online interaction (4 dollars versus 10 cents).

But what are the real obstacles banks need to overcome in automating customer interactions? Are the challenges of mobile banking really where we expect them?

The real challenges

 A recent survey by Bain & Company polling over 5,000 consumers shows that:

  • Millennials struggle with online banking. They are still on the learning curve with routine banking operations, and often find the digital channels inadequate. Therefore, they are actually placing calls to their banks at 1.7 times the rate of older users.
  • Senior customers rate mobile banking very positively. Granted, they are less likely to use smartphones and tablets to bank, but when they do, they rate the experience higher than younger customers.
  • Routine transactions make up most of tellers and branches’ volume. Customers of all ages mostly call or visit their banks to get support with routine operations.

Tapping into the (real) potential of mobile banking

There thus seems to be a lot of untapped potential for mobile banking. Banks could make a real difference by having a two-fold approach: teach the young to bank, and the old to self-bank.

By doing so, banks could drastically decrease the volume of calls and visits to their support centres, while increasing the conversion rate to digital channels.

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