Personal financial management tools delivered via mobile apps are the next step in banking and payment services, according to research by JD Power.
The marketing and consumer survey company found US banks and card providers were “turning their attention to more advanced ‘super tools’” to attract and retain customers.
JD Power combined results from four separate surveys assessing customer satisfaction with banking mobile apps, credit card apps, online banking, and online credit cards. These showed that “digital features focused on personal financial management” were linked to higher customer satisfaction.
Tools such as account transfers, bill payments, check depositing, and peer-to-peer lending have all been shown to improve customer satisfaction.
JD Power also found that, when banking app users “actively engage with three or more personal financial management tools”, the satisfaction scores it awards banks rose by 127 points compared to providers that do not have the same or similar tools.
“The first hurdle to lifting satisfaction with these tools is garnering wider tool use,” JD Power stated.
However, JD Power also found that these services brought new challenges for banks and card providers to navigate. Many providers — particularly regional banks — struggled to connect with customers using more advanced tools such as budgeting assistance.
Jennifer White, senior director of banking and payments intelligence at JD Power, said providers that “get their digital formulas right can position themselves as the hub of their customers’ financial lives”.
White continued: “Many banks and credit card providers clearly recognize this potential and have focused heavily on new digital tools related to personal financial management, but the results have been uneven thus far.
“While some providers are really elevating their customers’ digital experiences, others are struggling to get past basic transactional features.”