The Evolution of Banking
There are many places to handle your banking transactions today: debit or credit cards, ATMs, mobile phones and computers, branches and call centers. You’ve likely used each of them at some point in the past few months to manage your finances. However, with the emergence of new digital services, you might be wondering, “do we really still need them all?” The answer to that, simply, is yes.
Customers are different. Each banking vehicle is essential to someone, and we strive to offer what matters most to you, the individual. While every customer wants and needs access to their financial information, their preferred way of getting it and specific requirements are vastly different.
As you’ve likely heard, many of the largest banks closed branches in recent years as transaction volume dwindled. But despite mobile banking’s growing popularity, brick-and-mortar financial institutions still serve an important function. In the past two years, 4 out of 5 survey respondents said they’d visited a branch within the previous six months.
While some people still prefer physical branches, there’s no denying that mobile banking services are a business imperative. People now generally want and expect 24-hour access to their finances – and understandably so. According to the 2015 Trends in Consumer Mobility Report, 51 percent of survey respondents use mobile or online options as their primary method of banking.
These conflicting trends make it particularly important for financial institutions to find a balance between physical branches and digital services. Here’s how Bank SNB is striking that balance:
- Investing in mobile banking. Today, only about 10 percent of financial institutions offer a robust mobile banking platform for consumers and businesses, and they are often the largest banks. It’s more difficult for small banks to make the investment in technology and provide resources to deliver a quality, secure product. But this trend is changing; many bank vendors are rolling out affordable technology for smaller institutions, and it’s becoming more common – and more expected – in today’s banking environment. Just last month, Bank SNB launched mobile check deposit to provide greater convenience to consumers. And for business customers, we offer remote check capture, which enables you to deposit checks right from your office using scanners Bank SNB supplies.
- Offering sophisticated digital remittance processing for businesses. Our digital lockbox improves the speed of cash flow and enhances back-room productivity. DirectRemit MD, a more advanced payment processing system for the healthcare industry, also offers robust document imaging and online access to data for denial management and reporting. These digital tools can streamline operations and afford your business greater efficiency.
- Providing a digital hub of product information and financial resources. Earlier this year, we rolled out a new bankSNB.com to give you an online portal to learn about all our products and services. The new website is not only easier to navigate but also offers calculators, tools and industry updates to help you make smarter financial decisions.
- Ensuring a quality, secure, multi-channel digital banking platform. A bank that jumps on the bandwagon of every new digital trend is not always a good thing. There might be a reason the “latest and greatest” technology isn’t yet broadly accepted. At Bank SNB, we are committed to adapting our products and services to an increasingly digital world, but we adhere to a high level of security and fraud prevention check points and require quality customer service to manage inquiries, service requests and implementation. The security of your financial information is of utmost importance to us, so we have high expectations for our products, services and staff. Though this can sometimes delay rolling out new technology, you deserve a bank that doesn’t cut corners – especially when it comes to the protection of your data.
- Maintaining and expanding branch network appropriately. We recently announced an agreement to acquire First Commercial Bank in Oklahoma City. Once completed, the merger will add nine new branches to our system and an additional state to our footprint. While we understand that branch volumes are declining, we believe branches remain an important aspect of our service delivery. Many of our customers value face-to-face interaction with their bankers, and later this year, we will offer 33 locations across four states where they can experience that.
Digital banking services can be important drivers of efficiency in your personal and business life. Bank SNB will continue to bring our customers tested, secure and beneficial technology that can make your life easier – at home or at the office.
On The Mark was written by Bank SNB President and CEO Mark Funke.