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March 26, 2015

Is it time for a rethink of mobile banking?

Fintech firm Fiserv thinks 'Mobivores' are very soon going to make things very difficult for financial services.

By Alexander Sword

New mobile-only customers will require financial services to take a new perspective on mobile banking, according to a new whitepaper from Fiserv.

While ‘Mobivores’, or users who solely use mobile banking, currently number only 15 percent of a typical financial institution’s mobile banking user base, the segment is growing.

These customers present a challenge to banks because they have different needs from the typical user, as "it is nearly impossible to complete all banking tasks through the mobile channel due to typical processes and procedures."

"Mobivores, who are used to mobile-only experiences in other areas of their lives, fail to see why they must complete a task or connect with their financial institution through more traditional channels," the report comments.

Fiserv suggests that if financial services companies don’t address the demand from consumers for a mobile-only experience, they may lose customers.

To combat this, they must approach these consumers with a more compelling offering rather than try to win them back to traditional channels.

"To target the mobivore, financial institutions should invest in the mobile user experience and create the architecture necessary to enable these consumers to be mobile-only users. Most importantly, financial institutions must deliver the best, most compelling user experience possible, no matter what channel or device the consumer chooses."

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The report highlights the need to focus on user experience.

"To satisfy the mobile-only consumer, financial institutions must make the mobile banking user experience as frictionless and user-friendly as possible," says the report. "For example, registration and credential management must be streamlined and take into account the way tasks are accomplished on a smartphone."

While there was pressure for institutions to adapt, there would also be opportunities. For example, Fiserv highlights the phone’s camera, which has already been used to great effect by Concur to facilitate employees’ expenses management.

"For example, America First Credit Union (AFCU) enhanced its mobile app so members can select from five different loan types within the credit union’s app, each of which links to an application," the report reads. "If interested in a car loan, a member can use a smartphone camera to scan a vehicle’s VIN to see its retail and trade-in value."

Shirra Frost, director, mobile marketing, Fiserv commented: "The new types of interactivity enabled by mobile devices, such as self-service, direct communication, and personalisation, are important to all users, but these capabilities are especially crucial for mobile-only consumers.

"They want a full-service mobile banking experience with robust digital functionality and a compelling user experience."

Fiserv’s figures were based on over 2000 deployments of its services.

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