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BizReport : Ecommerce archives : December 11, 2017

More people banking online, how marketers can connect

As more people turn to mobile and online banking, rather than going to actual bank locations, it makes sense for bankers to take more of their business online, as well. One expert explains how bank marketers can connect with the consumers.

by Kristina Knight

Kristina: What are the major tech trends driving retail bank innovation today?

Christian Ball, Head of Retail Financial Services at GFT: Broadly speaking, three themes have arisen for us from our recent survey; around the tech trends driving innovation today, digitalisation itself and how banks are embracing those challenges. Banking as a Platform as a strategic imperative for a number of institutions in terms of how they see the need to reshape their propositions to meet those challenges. We know interest is building substantially around cognitive banking, around Artificial Intelligence (AI), machine learning etc. as banks come to terms with the need to process and derive value and insight from increasingly large amounts of available data.

Kristina: What does this mean for consumers?

Christian: If we look at the UK retail banking market as a whole, the customer is very much at the centre of most digital transformation projects. This may provide real benefits for the customer who are now far less inclined to visit their branch as they are becoming more and more used to digital banking, and this is why the banks have responded in-kind. Meeting their needs and expectations is paramount. Banks know that they are sitting on a wealth of information, especially unstructured customer data, which is not currently being used to its full capacity.

Kristina: What are your predictions for the industry in 2018?

Christian: It's a truism as we talk about this new area of open banking that in actual fact there isn't a cannon of knowledge for us to draw on. This is new and consequently, because it is new, we need to be embracing more of an entrepreneurial spirt as we seek to exploit the value of the open banking revolution. In 2018 there is also likely to be a great interest in how banks use their newly opened core systems to drive new business. Many organisations want to drive more product sales onto their platforms because of course the manufacturing cost and the unit cost will reduce as the volume increases, providing that the technology is in the right state of course. That means exploring new market places, maybe even developing their own market places or finding a market place for a product, and to support third party platforms by a utility approach to our core systems.

Some key survey result statistics:

Top three drivers for digitalisation
Desire to satisfy customers' expectations is the #1 driver for improving level of digitalisation
60% - Satisfy customers expectations
51% - Revenue increase from new services / products
47% - Operational cost reduction

Top three challenges of digital technologies implementation
Integration of legacy systems is the main challenge while implementing digital technologies
59% - Integration of legacy system with new technologies
58% - Security and privacy implications
51% - Lack of internal expertise and experience

Status quo Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions adoption
Virtual customer assistants are the main AI solution being adopted
61% - Visual customer assistants
42% - Robot process automation
41% - Next best action and personalised customer interface
25% - Robo advisory

Top three benefits of AI implementation
Lower operational costs and greater customer engagement are main expected benefits
71% - Lower operational costs
64% - Greater customer engagement
48% - Reduced risk

Kristina: What are some of the challenges facing the industry?

Christian: Challenges such as legacy systems, migration to the cloud and security and privacy concerns remain top concerns. It's encouraging to see so many UK banks embracing new ways of working and recognising the increasing importance of these new technologies, but there is still much work to be done. As systems, skills and technologies develop, we can look forward to seeing even more examples of successful digital transformation projects in the market. In addition, the culture and the potential drag of culture on execution is a critical success factor.

Tags: advertising, banking trends, ecommerce, GFT, online banking, retail banking

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