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Digital design challenges in banking

Written by: Emily Gallagher

Published on: December 16, 2015

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We recently conducted some research into the FinTech sphere, and one of the big takeaways was that bank’s digital products are under intense scrutiny as customer expectations grow.

In the US, 71% of people wanted additional levels of security (vs. 65% in the UK), 53% wanted faster ways to transact online (vs. 56% in the UK) and 50% wanted easier ways to log into their account (vs. 52% in the UK).

Tech competitors are forging ahead, already delivering intuitive experiences that anticipate the customer’s needs, while banks are struggling to deliver on their customers’ most basic expectations.

In order to keep up with the threat of digital-only companies encroaching on their market share, incumbents have to recognize and design for their challenges.

Design challenge: security

Demands for security can often conflict with those for speed and ease, which makes this particularly tricky to address. Fingerprint technology is a powerful response, but our data revealed an interesting stumbling block for this solution – for those who had not yet used fingerprint technology in the US, only 24% chose it as their preferred log-in method.

This doubled to 48% amongst those that had already used it (and in the UK it almost tripled from 17% to 47%), suggesting a mistrust of technology that customers have not already tested for themselves.

This reveals that, alongside the challenge to not compromise speed and ease in any security measures, banks need to overcome the challenge of this kind of education gap in their design solutions.

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Design challenge: speed and ease

With data breaches dominating the news in both technology and finance, deep-held anxieties around security are unlikely to go away anytime soon. This must be remembered when designing for speed and ease as the less friction there is in the banking process, the more customers will worry that it is not secure.

Software to improve the banking experience, like voice authentication, already exists but is not in use as a result of customer anxieties. Although the demand for speed, ease and security is great, there remains a need for theatre in the banking experience; a need to ‘perform’ security functions like verification loading that, while not technologically necessary, assuage customer anxieties.

Read more about other design challenges, mapping the digital threat, changing customer expectations and much more in our white papers and infographics.