As customers have started relying on banking apps, not as many people are going into bank branches. Millennials have started doing everything online from paying bills, and opening bank accounts to online shopping. Read the article below to see how bank branches are changing with the influx of online banking.
Over recent years, fewer customers are popping into bank branches, and more are logging onto mobile banking apps. Many have dispensed with wallets completely, because their smartphones do the same job, but better. Innovative start-ups, offering alternative banking models, become the new must-have accessory for trendy millennials.
According to GP Bullhound’s most recent Technology Predictions report, 91% of people surveyed prefer using a mobile banking app to visiting a physical branch of a bank. Banks are closing at an alarming rate – the consumer charity Which? found that the UK has lost nearly two-thirds of its bank and building society branches over the past 30 years, from nearly 21,000 in 1988 to only 7,000 at the end of 2018. Just last week, Santander announced it was closing 140 branches, necessitated by ‘changes in how customers are choosing to carry out their banking.’
And it’s no surprise – banks don’t offer a 24/7 service, customers are tired of long queues and archaic paperwork, and they’re left with a feeling that they don’t really have any control over their money. Plus, technology has allowed customers to make simple transactions – from checking their balance to transferring money – without having to go into branch.
Consumers want to be able to check their balance before they buy another round of drinks or freeze a misplaced card; they want a breakdown of spending at the click of a button and to be able to save as easily as they spend. This is where bright and innovative banking start-ups step in: the likes of Monzo, N26, Monese and Revolut hardly need an introduction. On top of the convenience and digital perks, they offer lower international exchange rates and have even incorporated cryptocurrency trading.
Other start-ups are growing at rapid rates by capitalising on consumer needs that larger players haven’t fulfilled. Brex, for example, recently reached unicorn status in under two years with its disruption of the credit card model, issuing credit cards to small companies and start-ups, and charging based on company revenues and credit history.