The lending and payments landscape is drastically changing, for both consumers and lenders. More and more, consumers are choosing to conduct their financial business online — either via desktop, tablet, or mobile — and that includes applying for loans.
For better or worse, digital is the new era of lending. Companies like Rocket Mortgage that allow consumers to quickly and easily give lenders access to their financial information and get almost instant preapprovals are the wave of the future.
So, what can credit unions do to ensure their lending efforts don’t suffer because more and more of their membership — particularly millennial membership — is gravitating toward companies and financial service providers that can offer fast, convenient ways to apply for loans, sign up for services, make payments, and in general, manage their finances?
Keeping an open mind to new ideas, tools, and strategies is a prime way to engage with your digital users, enhance their day-to-day experience, and meet their needs for digital financial management. Bill pay, home banking, and remote deposit capture, among other enhancements, have become table stakes for many lenders because these are tools that technologically savvy consumers expect from their financial service providers.
When it comes to payment options, you can engage your digital members in three key ways:
No. 1: Expand Your Payment Channels
As fintech continues to expand, financial institutions must get ahead of the curve and expand payment channels today. Person to person (P2P) apps are commonplace, and consumers expect this same kind of convenience from their financial institutions. You can stay competitive and enhance your customers’ experience by expanding your payment channels to include credit, debit, ACH, online banking, mobile applications and banking, Interactive Voice Response (IVR), and even access to non-branch in-person payment and deposit options, such as MoneyGram. Through SWBC’s partnership with MoneyGram, with their more than 40,000 locations nationwide, borrowers who make payments in cash are empowered to make their payment at any of these convenient locations across the country.
No. 2: Conduct A “User Journey” Audit
Anytime a consumer — whether they are your member or not — visits your website, they are essentially taking a journey through your digital “home.” If you find that people aren’t converting on your website or you’re getting customer service calls with questions that could easily be addressed on your website, conducting an audit of what users experience when they visit your website can help to identify potential problems and help your team prioritize realistic solutions. The goal of this exercise should be to make adjustments that will create a hassle-free, user-friendly experience for visitors, while still meeting security requirements.
No. 3: Partner With A Market Leader
Processing your borrowers’ payments and ensuring your institution is dotting your compliance “I’s” and crossing your compliance “T’s” should not be entrusted to anyone but a market leading payments provider. The stakes are simply too high. When choosing the right partner to best enhance your customers’ experience in the payments arena, look for a partner who:
Is experienced and can provide you with a list of clients of all asset sizes
Understands the importance of compliance and makes it a priority
Invests, continuously, in technology, infrastructure, and innovation to better serve you and your customers
Building a business partnership with SWBC is a vehicle for enhancing your customers’ experience and meeting borrower demands. Our payment technology provides your entire customer base and your staff with an efficient means to make payments, cure delinquent accounts, and it is 100% compliant.
By: Jason O’Brien
This article is an excerpt from our latest ebook, Meeting Consumer Self-Serve Payment Demand. It includes valuable and timely information such as the current state of the payments industry, tips on how to meet regulator and compliance demands, the shifting tide of payment technology, and how the rise of fintech is impacting credit unions. Click here to download the complete ebook!