Digital Banking Hub Roundup

Updates on Truist, Chase, Wells Fargo, BNPL and other trends

It’s been a busy month in digital banking where a number of new products and services have come to market and we’ve seen a change in the dynamics at the front of the market.

Truist rolled out its app that, while lacking a “wow” factor, certainly ticks boxes in terms of functionality.

“The app works and it’s a good foundation to build on,” writes Chris Ward, Director and Principal Consultant at Curinos, in his in-depth appraisal of the app. “Many of the recommendations or suggestions we would make are things we’d say to most brands: Think about money management beyond day-to-day spending as well as how the app can be used to engage customers with products that may be useful to them.”

One thing missing right now from the Truist app is any kind of chatbot. Aside from the US top 10 banks, just 18% of checking account providers tracked by the Digital Banking Hub offer any kind of automatic conversation agents. Wells Fargo has recognized the importance of a good virtual assistant and announced it’ll be building one – called simply Fargo – into its revamped app in the new year. Chatbots are about to get much more sophisticated.

Straight to the point? Truist’s transaction feed and ATM withdrawal details. Source: Digital Banking Hub

“Instead of having digital assistants sitting idly waiting for users to come to them with a problem, they will actively look at the user’s interactions with the system and make suggestions, completing specific journeys when required,” we wrote of the bank’s announcement as we assessed the place of in-app and online digital assistants. “When the virtual assistant is activated, it will provide a personalized summary of what is important to the user. By showing customers the things they care about most – and in some cases through an avatar – an emotional connection with the provider could be built. Fargo is a step in this direction.”

Chase meanwhile, was making waves in the UK where it launched its digital service. In our analysis of the app, our analysts picked up that it included an App Tracking Transparency feature (ATT) – an Apple requirement for apps that wish to track activity across other companies’ apps and websites. It could represent an evolution in digital banking, in which the provider builds a more holistic picture of the customer’s finances, offers more personalized rewards and uses the information to reappraise journeys. Chase says being able to track the data will allow the bank to build a better picture of customer spending and assist with fraud detection.

At the Digital Banking Hub we track individual providers’ offerings on desktop and in-app. Here are just a few of the trends we’ve pulled this month:

20% of US-based mortgage providers don’t show customers’ outstanding balances online

47% of UK-based retail checking account providers allow brand-new customers to apply for a current account through the app

23% of US-based robo advisors allow for recurring withdrawals through their apps

50% of US checking account providers offer transaction categorization in-app

A new foundational banking product

In terms of products, we’ve been analyzing how buy now pay later (BNPL) is changing digital finance, with more providers jumping into the market over the past few weeks. For those banks and institutions setting up BNPL capabilities, it represents a new and viable income stream, but getting the digital journey right in a fast-paced market is a tough ask. Specialist providers are now offering sophisticated and impressive user journeys with personalized functionalities and flexible products. Our editorial analysis goes right to the core of the market, and the Digital Banking Hub’s Suraya Randawa and Chris Ward were joined by Butter’s Timothy Davis and The Clearing House’s Peter Davey in a webinar to discuss where the market is headed.  

The month ahead

Spanning retail, small business, mortgage and unsecured lending, robo-advisor investments and credit cards, Digital Banking Hub users are able to make more informed strategic decisions based on our ongoing analysis. We provide information and diagnostics on onboarding and servicing within each of these areas for leading banks, credit unions, fintechs and other lenders.

This month, we’re looking at a range of specific feature updates from the likes of Navy Federal and Discover, investigating what the UK’s Variable Recurring Payments (VRP) rules mean for providers and how they’ll impact digital journeys when the rules come into force in January. We’ll be providing our monthly analysis into mortgage journeys, investment management solutions and the latest in digital banking news.

Hub subscribers will see some fairly big changes over the coming weeks, as we’ll be rolling out a whole new Insights Explorer to help users predict changes on the horizon with in-depth analysis and best practices from across the competitive landscape.

To gain access to our analysis and leading data insights into the digital banking industry, email: Suraya.randawa@curinos.com

Michael McCaw
Digital Content Editor
michael.mccaw@curinos.com
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