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How UX Design Makes Conversational Banking with AI Similar to ChatGPT

AI-powered solutions such as ChatGPT could fuel new types of products in banking, more personalized and more connected to users, but integrating innovative technologies often causes complications in terms of user experience. And here, the methods of financial UX design are very effective, as they help to imagine the unimaginable and create a digital solution, focusing on the needs of users. Let's explore how it works with designing ChatGPT-like conversational banking products.

This case study explores an actual experience with conversational banking design. It was a challenge to create a banking user experience that feels more like a conversation with a friend than a traditional banking transaction, fostering an emotional connection between users and the service.

Conversational banking user experience (UX) refers to using natural language processing and artificial intelligence to enable users to interact with their bank through a conversational interface, such as a chatbot or voice assistant. This allows customers to perform banking transactions, access account information, and get answers to questions in a more convenient and user-friendly way.

The UX design approach helps to understand and overcome the hidden pitfalls of implementing advanced technologies in digital financial products. We need to start by identifying the challenge that the business is facing with its digital product and the needs of its customers. Then we can design a solution that addresses all the issues and incorporates the latest technologies in a user-friendly way. This way, it is possible to deliver a product that looks not only great but also ensures tangible benefits for the business and its customers.

Going Beyond Existing Patterns

In 2020, a new client challenged the UXDA team to create a never-before-seen banking interface design that seamlessly connects conversational interaction and full-range retail banking services. There were no similar solutions on the market, and this was one of the first attempts to create full-featured, AI-powered conversational banking.

Creating an unconventional ChatGPT-like conversational interface required a thorough understanding of the psychological patterns of conversations and how, why and when people use them in the digital environment to achieve their goals. Conversations in digital services eliminate the manual work of searching for answers by tapping through interfaces, because often users are not aware if the answer even exists within the service.

Our approach began with ideating and testing three solutions for the conversational interactions: text-to-text, voice input and a hybrid approach.

The text-to-text conversation concept involved using a single screen with an open keyboard for users to type their thoughts and receive text-based responses. This approach of using text-to-text alone had the potential to be minimalistic and simple, but it also presented several challenges, including high cognitive load, difficulty creating emotional connections and lack of discoverability for first-time users.

We also discussed using speech-to-text technology for voice input, as voice assistants have become increasingly popular. Users expressed interest in this feature. However, that alone would not be viable for use in public or professional settings.

Ultimately, the hybrid approach, which combined text and voice input, simple navigation and visual elements, proved to be the most successful. It allowed for the creation of emotional connections, increased discoverability, minimized cognitive load and ensured usability in a variety of settings. 

Artificial Intelligence in the service remembers and recognizes users as they interact with the app. It gets to know them over time as a friend and is therefore able to provide smart clues to the most frequent or recent searches, or prepare personalized answers.

Implementing Conversation into Banking

By harnessing AI technology to understand user intent and provide personalized, contextual responses, this conversational banking app set out to create a deeper emotional connection with banking users. Our client's main priority was to treat all customers as human beings, regardless of their wealth status. 

To create this experience, we integrated conversational aspects across many product features, like transactions, finance and card management, investing and concierge service. As a result, we got a conversational interface similar to ChatGPT but completely focused on full-range banking services. Let's explore it in more detail.

360-degree View Dashboard

App's dashboard is designed to provide a 360-degree view of users' finances. The inspiration for this feature comes from traveling. When taking 360-degree photos, you can get a full immersive viewpoint from all angles of the places where you have been. Similarly, this dashboard offers users a comprehensive overview of their finances with just a simple swipe.

The main screen displays contextual information and notifications, while swiping left allows users to access pinned conversations with their personal banking concierge as well as summaries of all the previous conversation topics. Swiping right provides a more traditional banking experience, allowing users to view their accounts.

Concierge Service

Conversational banking transforms the traditional banking experience by introducing customers to a financial and lifestyle AI-powered concierge. A ChatGPT-like banking concierge guides them through their banking needs, while providing an intuitive and user-friendly way to access and explore banking services through a mobile app.

In cases in which users need more complex guidance or elaborate information, they get automatically shifted from the AI chat service to a conversation with a real person from customer service who is ready to offer help in a matter of seconds.

Easy Transactions with Sentence Patterns

Users can easily initiate banking transactions through the ChatGPT or Siri-like request by simply saying or typing in the needed action, for example, “send $200 to my mom.” The app processes the request, confirms with the user and executes it.

In the case whereby a user for some reason doesn't initiate action through the conversation, the app offers two other options: 1) to input keywords like "pay," "payments" or "transfer," and a payment form will appear, or 2) to receive a subtle tip that informs users how to use full sentences to initiate a payment. To enhance the user experience, a predefined statement is launched when a keyword is triggered, allowing users to learn the sentence pattern for future use.

The financial service also provides innovative conversational ways for users to save, invest, donate and perform other financial actions, such as automatically donating a portion of their travel expenses to green funds or purchasing a fraction of a company's stock every time they make a purchase at a specific retailer like Starbucks.

Card Management

Users can conveniently manage their cards through the app. They can block or report a lost card, change their PIN or turn on contactless payments. 

Conversational AI allows the app to anticipate users’ needs before they have expressed them, for example, if the user tells the app through the conversational interface "I've lost my card!" The app will guide them through the process of identifying which card is missing and provide all the necessary information for the next steps, including the option to order a new card.

Personalized and Unconventional Savings

The app allows users to create savings accounts through ChatGPT-like natural language interactions. 

Users can choose a specific savings goal, personalize the account with a picture and set the desired target amount. Additionally, users can easily add funds to the account through the conversational interface.

In addition to traditional saving methods, the app offers unconventional ways for users to move money, such as automatically sending money to a savings account when certain events are triggered, like when the NY Knicks win a game.

Seamless Investing

The app provides users with the ability to make investments directly from the dialog box in the chat. Users can easily initiate and track investments without the need to switch between multiple applications. This seamless experience allows users to make informed decisions and manage their investments in real time.

Takeaway: Conversational Banking with ChatGPT-like Experience Opens Up New Edges

We tried to dive deeper into digital human behavior to find a new edge for the banking user experience. This required courage and an innovative approach to combine cutting-edge technology with a design rooted in beauty, love and empathy. 

This case study illustrates an example of how disruptive AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, could be integrated into the banking experience with the help of customer-centered UX design. By treating customers as human beings and reducing the stress and frustration often associated with dealing with finances, this conversational banking app searched for a way to establish a true friendship between customers and their financial institutions, opening new possibilities for the banking industry.

Check out my blog about financial and banking UX design >>

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