Tapping Into Data to Drive Insights and Personalize the Customer Experience 

By Kristen Zschau, Director, Strategic Insights & Marketing Programs, Fiserv

As consumers embrace an increasing number of technologies to manage their money, banks and credit unions face growing expectations to create more personalized experiences. These financial experiences must be every bit as seamless and intuitive as the digital interactions that people have come to expect in other aspects of their lives. 

To deliver on these expectations, financial institutions can leverage real-time information and insight into consumers’ habits and preferences to drive engagement and inspire loyalty. When financial institutions understand how, when and where people want to move money and information, they are able to deliver solutions that help people take control of their financial lives.

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Financial Technology Increases Consumers’ Banking Options

Consumers have rapidly increased their use of financial services technology in the past few years – and the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this trend. Our research shows that more people are using mobile banking, person-to-person (P2P) payments and financial institution technology offerings to track their money. In tandem, the use of bank websites, mobile browsers and apps, and bank notifications and alerts are all up as the shift to digital-first environments continues. 

As consumers embrace financial services technology, they tend to use it with increasing frequency as their expectations for new capabilities and features grow. While this puts pressure on banks and credit unions to meet these rising expectations, it also creates real opportunity to mine these new and expanding sources of data to better understand consumer behavior and use insights gained to inform marketing strategy.

Customer Data Drives Insights

Financial institutions can use data analytics and reporting from digital payments to learn more about enrolled users. Here are a few key areas analytics can help to address:

Understand consumer profiles and segments: Data helps financial institutions to do a better job of targeting customers and members, including identifying high-potential prospects and connecting existing consumers to products and services they are more likely to find valuable. 

Monitor high-value consumer activity:  Analytics can help financial institutions determine important metrics related to revenue-generating services, such as adoption rates, trends and cross-selling opportunities. Cross-referencing this data with demographic profiles can help institutions create more personalized offerings that enhance the consumer experience and strengthen engagement.

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Identify and address risk areas: When financial institutions can access data to understand risk-prone segments, such as dormant and low-interaction customers, and understand precisely when and where engagement falls flat, they can proactively engage to improve activity. 

Make more informed business decisions: Taken together, data on consumer segments, activity and risk provides the opportunity for financial institutions to drive engagement, meet consumer demand for innovation and create the personalized experiences consumers have come to expect. For example, understanding which products are correlated to the use of other products can help drive marketing messages and investments. 

The Pathway to Personalized Experiences

The challenge with leveraging data is that while financial institutions have unprecedented amounts of it, not all of it is useful. Cutting through the clutter requires specific skill sets and expertise that the bank or credit union may not have in-house. This highlights the importance of identifying the right tools. 

Organizations looking at a payments data reporting solution should consider the following:

  • The ability to view and manipulate consumer data on demand
  • Access to a wide range of data points that shed light on how consumers are using electronic payments products
  • Options to rank and categorize users by activity, payment volume, payees and generational information
  • Regular feature updates and enhancements to help financial institutions stay a step ahead of trends
  • Easy-to-format, easy-to-understand reports

The right tools can help a financial institution look deeper into the data to see what types of consumers are using what types of payments, for which payees and with what frequency and transaction value. Organizations can also use data and insights to understand which consumers have stopped using the service along with those who haven’t yet adopted it. All of these payers can be ranked and categorized by various criteria.

When financial institutions apply analytics to all payments channels, they are better positioned to anticipate and meet the evolving expectations of today’s consumers. And the insights gained in the process will enable more personalized messaging and solutions – ultimately leading to richer customer engagement.

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