Will digitisation lead to personalised banking services?

In this age of digital transactions, most consumers prefer wallets such as Pay Tm, Citrus, and Oxygen etc. Definitely, it is more convenient but there is another angle to it. These wallets are more user-friendly and offer a different level of personalisation. So, it’s time for our banks to pull up their socks and take their offerings to a whole new level.

As customers, we all feel that banks do not understand our financial goals well and they are too mechanical in their dealings. Even if we have been associated with a particular bank for several years, there is so personalisation in their services.

Yes, that is the catchword, Personalisation. Banks can offer better services in managing the customer’s finances if they work towards increased engagement with them. Only a relationship manager with a stereotype approach, or few mass mailers will not do the trick. Informing clients in case of any suspected fraudulent activity, helping them track their spending and investing habits, reminding them of their bill payment due dates as many more customised offers will go a long way in making customers feel special.

There are several top banks in India which have already adopted analytics to help them personalise their services. HDFC is one such bank. They began using analytics in the early 2000s. The idea is to step into the mind of the customers, customise the offers and promote the products accordingly.

A very practical application of analytics is adopted is the State Bank of India. The premier bank in India uses data models to analyse its education and home loans. This way it has been successful in bringing down the level of bad debt in the bank. There have also been instances when the bank has set up kiosks in the educational institutes where maximum students were reported to drop out because of high fees.

Experts suggest that the extent to which digital practices are adopted by banks will be a key differentiator in the success of the banks.

The leading banks, which have been operating in a traditional way, need to understand that they have to focus on these critical areas without losing focus on its core operations. They need to connect with the customers and engage them. This is the only way to see how they are financially positioned and how you can assist them better.

Use AI to understands and analyse customer’s pattern: 

Artificial Intelligence can use customer data and analysis the pattern to understand their payment pattern. This way banks can encourage the customers to use their payment cards. For example, if a person uses a card to book flight or railway tickets, AI can suggest him associated services like cab, hotels, sightseeing trips etc.

AI enabled Chatbots

They are a much in use feature these days. These chatbots handle all the basic queries that a customer might have. This includes account opening, account closing, card activation, credit card services etc. As the chatbots handle much of these queries, the customer care representatives can be utilised for more personalised help. The help they offer can be more advisory and consultative in nature. This will help employees to connect with the banks.

Access to the right person: 

As customers sometimes we feel disconnected with our banks because we do not have access to the right person. In western countries, banks use AI to analyse customer text messages and forward them to the right person. This software has tremendous speed and can process thousands of messages in a few seconds. This enhances the speed of query resolution and customers are made to feel valued. This also increases the customer’s loyalty towards a brand.

AI can be increasingly used to prevent fraudulent activities.

The software can analyse suspicious banking transactions and prevent any misuse of cards by scammers. They can also use the voice sample of the customers to authenticate in case any imposter places withdrawal or fund payment overall.

Established banks can tie up with Fin techs which already have tasted success in personalised customer care powered by a growing artificial intelligence and digital platform. Fin techs have the technology support necessary to do research and devise bespoke solutions for the customers.

Grow beyond your core into relevant ecosystems

Since long banks have always promoted related products to the customers. For example, if someone has a savings account, he is only sold a credit card, a pre-approved loan or a fixed deposit account. A customer may not even need all of these. Therefore, if banks analyse the needs of the customer well and promote their umbrella of products, it will be beneficial for both.

By moving past the conventional offerings, banks will strengthen their operational capabilities and increased engagement with clients. For example, banks can also offer business services like accounts receivable management, cash flow management, working capital management etc. to people who have a current account.