Mobile banking eclipsed 50% adoption rate in the last couple years. That means that more than half of all account holders use mobile banking at least monthly. And that usage rate is expected to continue to rise.
At the same time, most financial institutions are giving up on mobile and contactless payments. They’re letting the major players, like Apple Pay and Google Pay, take over that portion of the market.
So, what are financial institutions focusing on instead?
Mobile banking applications that help users manage and control their money. Today, mobile banking applications and features are flooding the market. Each promise to return transparency and control to their users’ finances. And they may be onto something.
Here are the best mobile banking application features in 2020.
The Best Mobile Banking Applications in 2020
This section will list the features of mobile banking applications—not the companies that offer those features. Because many companies offer the same services, it would be both exhausting and confusing to list them all. Instead, we’ll talk about what they do, how they do it, and why they’re great.
1. Fraud Alerts
What would you do if you found a fraudulent charge on your credit card statement? What would you do if you found it two months after it happened? What if you missed it altogether?
Fraud alerts help people monitor and manage their money more safely. By alerting the user about suspicious activity, financial institutions can empower their mobile app users to take action on potential threats to their finances.
2. Automated Savings
More than 70% of people have less than $1,000 in savings. More than a third of people have no savings at all. Frankly, the causes for such lack of savings are complex and can’t be solved by an application.
Well, not entirely… Automated savings does help. For some, it’s an automatic transfer to a savings account. For others, it means rounding every debit or credit card charge up to the nearest dollar—the rounded-up money is then deposited into a savings or investment account. Helping people save without making them think about it is a big deal.
3. Money Transfers
Restaurants won’t even let you try to split the check six ways anymore. And when you spot your out-of-towner friend for popcorn and a movie, they’re back on the flight before they’ve got the cash to pay you back.
Peer-to-peer payments are understandably popular now. Money transfer apps keep communities square. They just need to be free, instantaneous, and easy to use. Bonus points for social components.
4. Subscription Management
The average adult in the United States has over $850 per month in recurring charges. Many of them don’t even realize how many services they’re paying for. And those subscriptions add up quickly.
Providing financial transparency helps people make better decisions with their money. Subscription management also offers an easy way to manage payments, from subscription cancelation to changing payment methods.
5. Card Switching
Like subscription management, card switching is a very useful mobile banking application feature. What happens when your card is reissued after it expires or gets lost, damaged, or stolen? Or what if you get a new card with better rewards and you want to switch your payments to the new one?
Card switching gives people more control over their finances. Plus, it eliminates the pain of manually changing payment methods.
6. Credit Monitoring
Cloud security is getting a lot of news these days — and not always in a good way. The Equifax and Capital One breaches show just how vulnerable our data can be.
Credit monitoring or free credit checks help consumers identify potential fraud early. Anything that increases consumer safety is a major win.
7. Digital Account Opening
Imagine trying to open a new account, only to be handed a big stack of papers to pore over and sign.
No thank you.
Some vendors can open accounts in less than a couple minutes. Others can help you apply for new cards, new accounts, or loans with a few taps on your phone. Mobile banking applications are best when they provide a robust, flexible banking experience.
8. Charitable Giving
Amazon has Amazon Smile. Facebook offers donation portals for birthdays. So why wouldn’t your financial institution make giving easier, too?
Giving people the chance to promote a good cause will make them feel better about their place in the world. As a bonus, those feelings of responsibility and generosity will be extended to the financial institution that helped that happen.
All in all, there are many mobile banking application features that deserve mention here. And there are many great vendors who provide those services.
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