The coronavirus pandemic has created a lot of uncertainty and lifestyle changes for many individuals within a short period of time. Not only are people facing challenges associated with their health, but also with other aspects that pertain to employment and their finances. There is not a doubt that the economy will need time to recover. Many businesses were required to shut down for months without any money coming through their doors, and even as we continue to reopen through the phase system, it could take time for people to feel comfortable stepping into a store or other public places after social distancing.
From a personal finance standpoint, many financial services are advantageously responding to the pandemic by taking a huge digital shift. Because more and more banks and other providers are offering online features to their users, they have been able to continue business through the use of technology and the popularity of smartphones and mobile apps. Technology plays a very significant role within the financial system. Individuals no longer need to order checks in person or consult with a bank teller about their account transactions. Since the beginning of the pandemic, more and more people have caught on to the convenience and simplicity of using online resources to manage their money, and not surprisingly, this digital shift could continue to increase post-coronavirus.
Here are some financial trends that are looking to change the industry post-pandemic:
An Online Banking Boost
Retail finance companies and challenger banks are in a great position to provide people with the resources they need to take on their financial situations with ease and in the comfort of their own homes. Almost all in-person big banks have had to shut down internally and rely on phone calls, text messages, and their checking account apps for updates associated with their users’ money. However online platforms have skyrocketed in popularity not only for their digitally driven mindset, but for the unique features that they offer, like budgeting methods and automatic saving options. Some online banking platforms also offer advanced direct deposits without added costs. These cost savings can accumulate overtime, and relieve users of having to pay for unnecessary fees that are associated with traditional bank accounts such as account maintenance fees, overdraft fees, and fees associated with completing certain transactions. Online financial services are going to continue to be on the radar as this trend is predicted to surge and become an essential way to monitor your finances, especially after the pandemic.
Contactless Card Payments
Through a mobile device, users are able to complete a payment by simply holding their smartphone against a card reader. This completely eliminates the need to swipe your credit card or type in a pin when purchasing items at the register. These are said to be more secure than traditional cards with a magstripe, which can be easy for a person to duplicate the data that is associated with your bank account. Because contactless payments are validated, it makes it very difficult for hackers to steal your information. This mobile payment strategy requires you to bring your smartphone with you when you plan to shop, meaning that it’s technically okay to leave your handheld cards at home if they’ve been digitally programmed into an app.
For businesses, it’s important to stay up to date with the latest technological trends just as well as consumers are. As financial services businesses are providing people updated and improved implementations that aid their money management strategy, it’s vital to keep your business implications aligned with what the majority of your buyers are using to stay current with the latest trends. This is especially important with the current health concerns and anxieties that have come about since the beginning of the pandemic. No-touch payments are prioritized by many people, and this preference can affect your business practices and someone's willingness to make a purchase if not taken into consideration.
Timely Customer Updates and User Experience
Digitally-driven financial companies have features that allow people to customize and view account information and updates in real-time. These come in the form of on-screen notifications or app alerts, so they can be viewed as soon as they send, if necessary. These can be customized specifically for the user, sending messages that incorporate their name, account balance, and checking status. This personal touch contributes to customer retention, showing users that they’re using a service that is tailored to their needs and wants.
Most financial services apps and online platforms are designed to be easily navigated, giving users access to money-related information simply and quickly. This capability makes it possible for individuals to view every transaction they make and send money to friends and family with the touch of a button. These features have shaped how people handle their financial life through the pandemic and are predicted to become more popular among the population post-pandemic as well, due to convenience and low interaction.
These new money management trends are bound to reshape the financial industry post-pandemic. More and more users are going to use digital tools to stay on track of their finances, whether it’s budgeting, making payments, or building a savings account.