December 15, 2016
The year 2016 has seen a shift in banking innovation and the payments space to accommodate the evolving consumer. Today’s digital consumers demand convenience in their day-to-day banking, 24/7 visibility into finances, and a seamless end-to-end payment experience. What’s more, they want value-added services that support all purchase-related activities. And they want access to these services directly from their smartphones. In response to consumer expectations and competition from FinTech vendors, traditional financial institutions are repositioning themselves from a largely one-dimensional utility to an all-inclusive financial services provider.
Needless to say, the functionality of banking and mobile banking apps have become a top priority and core differentiator for FIs in the battle to retain and lure customers. The result has been remarkable on the innovation front, so as we approach the holiday season (and gear up for overspending) we’d like to take a minute to appreciate three banks for nailing the consumer experience. These best-in-class services inform shoppers and make their entire purchase experience a little more manageable. Here’s to hoping they mitigate post-holiday financial hangovers entirely.
Only available in the US
Simple is a free, branchless, all-digital checking account designed to be used mostly on your smartphone. It comes with a Visa debit card and a handful of first-rate mobile banking tools.
Why we love it: Budgeting during the holidays (and otherwise) can be hard, but Simple makes it, well... Simple. The bank offers detailed budgeting features and mobile access so you can stay on top of your finances on-the-go. Simple encourages you to set budget goals and stash them away in digital envelopes by categories.
Bonus: The best part about it? The Safe-to-Spend feature takes into consideration upcoming bill payments, outstanding checks, and pending transactions so you know exactly how much you have to spend without overdrawing your account. You never have to worry about overspending again.
Only available in the US
Citibank’s Price Rewind does a 60-day search for a lower price on any item purchased with your Citi bankcard. If they find one, Citi customers can receive the difference in price directly into their bank account. Now that’s customer service.
Why we love it: Did you get the lowest price on your holiday purchase? Most retailers discount their products heavily following peak shopping season, and big box retailers like Best Buy, offer price match guarantees post-purchase. Rather than paying off holiday debt in January, you may actually earn some money back instead!
Only available in Canada
Scotiabank recently launched eReceipts as part of their mobile wallet. This feature allows Scotiabank customers to capture and upload all their gift (and non-gift) receipts directly to their banking app. This means that Scotiabank users never have to worry about searching for a paper or email receipt ever again.
Why we love it: Managing paper receipts is a pain all year round, but eReceipts lets you capture and store all your receipts right in your Scotiabank app. It also enables item-level search. Did mom lose her gift receipt for that cashmere scarf? Just search scarf or the brand name and her gift receipt will pop up.
Bonus: For small to medium-sized business owners – this service also enables automatic transaction matching, making your reconciliation and expense tracking painless.