Banks Get on the Phone, Tablet

Even though Internet banking has been a mainstream technology for only the past decade, it's often difficult to remember a time when you couldn't quickly and automatically pay bills each month, transfer money from one account to another with a click of the mouse, or complete loan documents online.

And for increasing numbers of people, it's becoming difficult to remember a time when they couldn't perform financial transactions with their mobile devices. Over the past 12 months, there has been an increase of more than 11 percent in the number of mobile banking (mBanking) consumers on the market.

The increased adoption of enhanced mBanking solutions – both in terms of more financial institutions (FIs) deploying solutions, as well as the increasing percentage of consumers using mBanking – is examined in the newest Heavy Reading Mobile Networks Insider report, Financial Institutions Cash In on mBanking Applications.

This report examines the mBanking market and analyzes the most lucrative features of mBanking; drivers in the industry; and challenges that FIs are encountering as they implement solutions. It includes a comparative analysis of solutions available in the market and examines the geographic landscape and trends that are likely to occur in the industry over the next 18-24 months.

As evidenced in the report, mBanking is becoming so prolific that it is actually displacing traditional online banking. And according to several studies, it's not difficult to understand why.

In one recent study, it was shown that FIs such as banks and credit unions gain up to 2 percent of new customers when they introduce a mobile solution. Likewise, FIs experience up to a 20 percent increase in client retention for mobile users. This becomes especially important in a market in which consumers are so quick to change banks, as evidenced by the recent backlash felt by Bank of America and other FIs that attempted to impose fees for debit card usage.

Also important for FIs, though, is that mBanking actually helps them control costs. For instance, a recent study shows that mBanking solutions can result in a 50 percent reduction in both voice response unit and live agent calls for mBanking users. This not only lowers operating costs, but also allows bank employees to focus on other activities that generate revenue.

But FIs aren't the only winners in the mBanking scenario. Consumers gain the added security of converting paper cash into cash accounts and the convenience of access to cash at all times. Meanwhile, retailers are finally jumping onto the mobile bandwagon, recognizing the benefits of person-to-person (P2P) payments and other mobile money payments that reach the under-banked and unbanked markets so long ignored by traditional banking and retail services.

— Denise Culver, Research Analyst, Heavy Reading Mobile Networks Insider

The report, Financial Institutions Cash In on mBanking Applications, is available as part of an annual single-user subscription (six issues) to Mobile Networks Insider, priced at $1,595. Individual reports are available for $900. To subscribe, please visit: www.heavyreading.com/mobile-networks.

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