Author: Danny Payne, DanPayne@ProfitStars.com
I am extremely fortunate because I get the opportunity to work with many successful financial technology companies that provide core, Internet, and mobile banking solutions and resources to companies and people like you. Recently, I have seen a true convergence of technology. And as companies are driving towards the “mobile age”, I am seeing the technology requests fall somewhere in between.
So here is the question, do you (as a user) consider your iPad or Android tablet to be mobile? I guess it is mobile because you can take it with you wherever you go. (If we are keeping score, I packed this laptop I am typing on with me on 143 airline segments last year … so I think you could consider it mobile too.) So again I ask, do you think a tablet is a “mobile” device? Companies building mobile banking products should. FinTech companies are pumping a lot of money and (excuse my pun) “banking” on you to adopt these mobile applications. The ability to balance the checkbook, pay bills, and deposit a check from a mobile device makes banking anywhere much easier. And, according to a recent Independent Community Bankers of America study, 37 percent of community FIs currently offer mobile banking — more than twice as many as two years ago. Another 44 percent of community FIs plan to implement the service by 2014.
While I truly believe in the importance of instant access and “everything at my fingertips”, I also believe it is critical to weigh your mobile decision on more than competitive pressures. A mobile strategy should encompass a corporate approach to the heart of your customer base. While banking on your mobile phone is instant and convenient, is that truly the way users will interact with your institution on a daily basis? In my humble opinion … no. I realize I don’t represent the youngest generation of users, but I feel more comfortable speaking for the 30+ age group, along with my parents, when I advise that mobile banking on a tablet is a more reasonable experience for my banking needs. The tablet experience is giving users and subscribers the ability to have a full Internet banking experience in a mobile environment. And because tablets are larger in size and quickly replacing laptops in homes, and because the tablet apps are more complex, users are adopting this as their “mobile” experience. (Not to mention, everywhere you go you can find Wi-Fi.)
My hope for you is if you are considering or even shopping for a “mobile strategy” it may be advantageous to truly think through your entire strategy and act proactively and not reactively. Instead of getting lost in the “bells and whistles”, you should be asking how the vendor is going to help you evolve into the future of mobile banking and provide the innovative, on-the-go services your customers crave.