For some segments of the population, mobile banking technology may still seem like a recent innovation. For younger generations, however – people considered “digital natives”, this generation has little recollection of a time when they were not “connected”
either via their phone, tablet or browser. The mobile adoption has given this generation access to friends, information, commerce anytime, anywhere. Banking on-demand is an expectation of this group.
Research by Salesforce reports that more than a quarter of millennials are completely reliant on the mobile banking application on their smart device. Adapting to this mobile-first preference – from a consumer group that Forbes notes will make up 75 per
cent of the workforce by 2025 – is essential for any financial organisation looking to not only keep their current customers engaged with the bank but is also mandatory for reaching new customers.
How crucial are mobile banking applications to millennials?
It’s something of a cliché nowadays for older generations to point out the amount of time their younger counterparts spend on their smartphones, but there is an element of truth to the observation. Deloitte notes that over 80 per cent of millennials owned
smartphones in 2015, with almost 90 per cent of those users checking the device within 15 minutes of waking each day.
‘A quarter of Millennials are completely reliant on mobile banking applications.’
That attachment to the mobile extends to the banking sector. Research by Nielsen found that consumers aged between 21 and 34 report greater participation in mobile banking activities than any other age group, with Generation Z (15-20 years old) beginning
to show similar usage. This trend is not just in developed economies – emerging nations are quickly catching up.
“In some developing markets, usage is primarily driven by rural consumers that have the ability to access financial services without travelling to physical locations,” says Stuart Tagg, Financial Services Leader, Nielsen Europe.
China is a great example of an economy, that for the most part, has missed the widespread adoption and use of credit cards. Consumers in China have moved rapidly from cash to electronic money as means of payment. This has been spurred by the growth of
Alipay and WeChat for commerce, as an example, and followed closely by the banking sector.
Widespread support for innovation
PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) has found that not only are millennials highly engaged with mobile banking solutions, they’re also more willing to support organisations that seek to innovate in their service delivery. PwC’s survey on retail banking found younger
respondents are 50 per cent more likely to trust non-traditional, technology-focused businesses with a strong history of innovation.
Capturing the attention of the millennial audience may require some daring steps to capitalise on the digital technology upon which their lives are run. The ability of the bank to move rapidly to changing customer demands and market influences is key to
staying competitive with this group of customers. We believe that the use of a Digital Banking Engagement Platform is a key foundation of technology to support the business agility required by the bank.