10 Ways to Create Seamless Experiences with a FinTech

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FinTechs are providing the financial industry with new markets, improved efficiencies, and better customer experiences. Billions of dollars in venture capital funding are enabling these entrepreneurs to drive new financial services innovations. Yet many banks have been unable or unwilling to embrace these new technologies because they lack the technical skills or infrastructure to make the necessary FinTech integrations.

The success of a FinTech integration is highly dependent on how well it integrates with your existing public site, enrollment platform, online banking or mobile app. Simply adding a link to the FinTech stand-alone platform will not give you the results you are looking for. Below are 10 strategies to ensure a seamless customer experiences for banks that are embracing new FinTech partnerships.

1. Leverage APIs
In 2020, you may want to reconsider any FinTech partnerships that do not offer an API (Application Programming Interface) infrastructure. APIs extract the data and business logic away from the user interface, enabling platform owners’ complete control over their digital experience. Oftentimes, you are unable to completely integrate the experience because of resources, budget, or time constraints. But inevitably, there will be data you want to expose in other platforms.

2. No Cobranding
Only one brand can really own the customer. The customer needs to be able to answer, “Who am I working with? Can I trust them? How will the product be serviced?” The highest abandonment rates occur when a customer is changing brands or changing channels. Generally, the bank owns the relationship with the customer, but there is an increasing number of white label opportunities for banks as well.

3. No Dead Ends
The navigation between the FinTech and the bank platform should have a common header and footer. A common global navigation is critical to maintain engagement as customers complete tasks on one platform and engage in the next logical activity. Banks should be able to provide dynamic headers and footers to their Fintech partners.

4. Provide Contextual Information
Every time a customer navigates to another page on your site, they must reset their expectations and ascertain what is required of them. Adding related features to the page can help build trust and further engagement. For example, if you are writing an article about finding the best mortgage, you may want to embed a mortgage rate calculator into the page. You can use iframes to embed the FinTech’s calculator experience contextually into the article page template. Making iframes responsive is a rite of passage for most front-end developers, but it is well worth the effort. However, do not attempt to Iframe an entire application or website. Inevitably, the experience will be compromised because you did not anticipate the impact of the Iframe on a secondary page or test every supported browser or device.

5. Accessibility (ADA)
The bank is ultimately accountable for the accessibility of all of their digital experiences. Most likely, the FinTech will not have the same level of due diligence. Web Content Accessibility Guidelines AA (WCAG AA) are the most commonly accepted ADA standards and should be shared with your FinTech partner. Consider listening to the FinTech’s platform through a screen reader, running an accessibility validator, or try navigating the FinTech’s platform with just a keyboard.

6. Responsive
Most modern FinTech platforms adjust the display of the page components based on the device or the screen display size, and use either responsive or adaptive design to do so. However, there are still a number that don’t. Most banking site traffic is now on cell phones; therefore, optimizing the mobile experience is absolutely critical. Forcing customers to pinch and zoom constantly is a horrible user experience. To test a FinTech’s responsiveness, reduce the size of your browser window and see if the components begin to stack and realign as the browser window size gets smaller. These adjustments occur at predefined breakpoints (i.e. screen width). While there is no standard for defining responsive breakpoints, because of the large number of devices in the market, it may be something to consider as you integrate your platform with a FinTech.

7. Single Sign-On
Passwords are consistently the number one customer service issue. It is essential that banks and FinTechs leverage the same authentication process by using a single sign-on (SSO) platform. Never require customers to create a second username and password. This will significantly impact your deployment’s adoption and customer satisfaction.

8. Maintain the Session
Make sure that the online banking platform session is being maintained as the customer navigates between platforms. Otherwise, customers will need to log in every time they move between platforms, which is naturally incredibly frustrating and confusing for them.

9. Pass Information
Banks have a large amount of customer information that could be used to personalize the FinTech’s customer experiences. Passing the customer’s current product mix or contact information can significantly improve a needs assessment or an enrollment experience. Make sure your privacy policy covers sharing information with preferred partners.

10. Track Adoption & Abandonment
Regardless of the integration approach you take, you will want to continuously monitor the success of the FinTech deployment. Hopefully, your FinTech partner will allow you to add tags, i.e. a couple of lines of JavaScript, to the implementation. These tags can be used to record sessions and track abandonment, adoption rates, browsers, devices, session time, and even error rates on platforms like Google Analytics or SessionCam. Tag management platforms can simplify the process of administering tags but may be considered a security or performance risk to the FinTech platform. A tag management platform can allow the bank’s administrators to add code to the FinTechs page without going through the necessary information security and performance tests.

The team members at Digital Banking Transformation LLC have over 30 years of experience optimizing the digital experience of dozens of FinTech integrations. We can help banks identify and implement successful FinTech partnerships to improve their efficiency, simplify the experiences, and open up new markets. Please give us a call at (619) 565-5631.

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