Incorporate Features & Functionality Important To Members
Last month, Finalytics.ai released the 2023 Credit Union Digital Experience report on the state of digital at the largest 100 credit unions in the United States. Over several weeks we are drilling down into the various categories and scoring that made up the final results used in the report. This week we are evaluating how the quality and contribution of visual design and branding at the largest 100 credit unions impacts the members’ digital experience.
In the 2023 Finalytics.ai report, the following criteria were used in assessing how credit unions performed in this area: online account origination, mobile check deposit, live chat, find a brand or ATM, search, calculators, peer-to-peer payments, and product comparisons. Members today have high expectations concerning the features and functions accessible to them via their mobile devices and desktops from their credit unions. More and more credit unions are working to keep pace with emerging FinTechs to protect their member base. One area getting the most focus is functionality that facilitates digital payments and protects wallet share.
The five organizations with the top scores in features and functionality were Citizens Equity First CU 3.00, Vystar CU 3.00, CommunityAmerica CU 2.93, Digital CU 2.93, and Stanford FCU 2.93. All scoring in the Finalytics.ai report is on a one to five scale with one being “poor” and five being “most innovative.” Findings from our evaluations include the importance of the following areas:
Home Page Content
Every credit union we talk to describes themselves as being member centric or calls out their devotion to great service as a brand differentiator. When we talk to their users, they tell us they appreciate that branch staff know them by name. However, credit unions generally struggle to translate their exceptional offline service into digital channels. When well implemented and integrated into the site, a live chat service can help bridge the digital service gap. Today, slightly more than half of the credit unions we reviewed offer chat service.
Native Apps for Digital Natives
The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the long-term trend of members moving away from seeking in-branch services and relying more on digital banking. Most credit unions rely on outside vendors for their apps, yet these vendors may have limited ability to impact member satisfaction. App scores have a long tail, with 30% scoring 4.6 or lower. That leaves the remaining 70% clustering in a spike around the 4.7-4.9 mark. The average score is 3.21, which is slightly below the Apple App Store average of 3.35.* The clustering of scores near the top could be attributed to the top vendors since it would make sense for their scores to be consistent across brands.
Math is hard, so providing your users with calculators to help them model
different financial scenarios saves them time and hassle. Unfortunately, more than half the sites we reviewed introduced a new hassle by making their calculators hard to find. Only 16 sites included the calculators embedded directly in the product detail pages where they are most useful and relevant. Integrating them into the product pages has the added benefit of keeping the user engaged on a higher converting page.