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July 25, 2023

Smart Banking App Development: What You Should Know

July 25, 2023
Read 9 min

With most financial services available online for years, digital banking is no longer a surprise – it has become imperative. Today, people expect nothing less than digital, accessible, and convenient services. Due to the busy lifestyles of millennials and mature representatives of Gen Z (who are gradually becoming key earners), banks must compete for customers by offering even more streamlined experiences, personalized services, and innovative products. That’s exactly what they can offer with smart banking.

smartbanking

Smart Banking: What is it?

Smart banking is a modern approach to providing banking services to users through advanced technologies. With a smart banking app, managing money becomes easier and faster for people. Moreover, customers have access to practically all banking services regardless of their physical location. People can conduct all operations using their phones or other devices.

Smartbanking allows people to keep track of their finances and make better-informed choices and decisions. Today a lot of banking institutions all over the globe turn to mobile banking app development services to offer their clients a new way of paying bills, viewing balances, and performing many other money-related tasks.

Advantages of launching a banking app

  • Customer service cost reduction. After launching a smart banking app, banks can optimize their workforce at bank branches.
  • Paperless workflow. Thanks to mobile banking app development, financial institutions can shift to digital workflow, reduce bureaucracy, and streamline a lot of processes.
  • Increased security. With a mobile app, banks can ensure a higher level of user data protection compared to traditional banking approaches. Applications use encryption for protecting sensitive information and offer advanced user authentication methods like biometrics.
  • Data analytics. Smart banking apps can become a source of valuable insights into customer needs, preferences, and behavior. Thanks to this information, banks can improve their services by making the right data-driven decisions.
  • Additional competitive advantage. The launch of an advanced and feature-rich smart banking solution can help banks to stand out from the row of their competitors.
  • Higher customer satisfaction. The easier and faster the interaction with a bank, the happier its customers will be.

Benefits of smart banking apps for users

  • 24/7 availability. Users can get access to the services at any time and from anywhere.
  • Time efficiency. All the tasks can be performed much faster in comparison to those cases where it is necessary to visit a bank branch.
  • Easier fund management. Users can track their expenses, better plan their budgets, and make savings.
  • Quick transactions. A lot of modern banking apps allow users to conduct practically instant peer-to-peer money transfers.
  • Improved security. Using such an app makes it possible to detect fraud and take measures to protect funds.

Stages of the smart banking app development process

Mobile banking application development includes all the main steps that are typical for the creation of any software product.

  • Market research and ideation. First of all, you need to define the exact goals you want to achieve with your solution. Then, you should find and analyze the range of similar products that are already available to users. Try to define their strong and weak sides and detect what features will make your own smart banking app unique.
  • Discussion of requirements with your development team. Always provide mobile banking app developers with clear requirements and tasks. It will help you to get a product that will meet your expectations.
  • Design and development. At this stage, designers will create interfaces for your app based on its functionality. And programmers will be responsible for building features and conducting the required integrations.
  • Solution testing. The development team should find and fix all the bugs before end users can detect them. That’s why modern approaches to banking application development always include several types of manual and automated tests. Some of them should be performed in parallel with development.
  • Release. When everything is ready, you can make your smart mobile banking app available for download on the major app marketplaces.
  • Post-launch maintenance. We recommend you regularly monitor the performance of your app and analyze users’ feedback. It will help you to eliminate any existing vulnerabilities and introduce improvements that will have a positive impact on user experience.

Key features of smart banking apps

If you want to build a custom banking software solution, you can enhance it with advanced and unique functionality. Skilled mobile banking app developers can help you turn your ideas into real products. However, there are several features that are core to any smart banking app and should not be missed.

Account management

With this feature, users can open, close, and manage their bank accounts as well as add or update their personal details directly via a mobile app.

Budgeting

Such tools will let users monitor their spending and set up budgets to control the allocation of their finances.

Bill payment

Thanks to this feature, customers can track and pay their bills at any convenient moment. A smart mobile banking app can also have functionality for automating this procedure. As a result, users can be sure that all their bills are paid on time.

Transaction history

With a smart banking app, users can view and analyze their expenses as well as track incoming transactions.

Personalized recommendations

Banks can provide financial advice and offer services tailored to the needs of customers, such as loans with lower interest rates or new investment opportunities.

Customer support

Banks can greatly increase the quality of their support services thanks to modern applications. By using data accumulated by a smart banking app, they can provide customers with an accurate and quick response.

Bank branch and ATM locator

This functionality allows users to search for the locations of the nearest bank offices or ATMs. As a rule, the feature also contains basic information about opening hours and the services provided by each branch.

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The best smart banking apps

To better understand what new opportunities smart banking apps can offer to users, you can have a look at a couple of real-life examples.

Bank of America

In 2023, the application of Bank of America ranks highest in banking mobile app satisfaction among national banks in the study by J.D. Power.

smart mobile banking app
Source: Bank of America

The app has a range of traditional smartbanking features like account management, money transfers, and bill payment. It also has some advanced tools and functionality like investment management and virtual financial assistant Erika.

The bank pays a lot of attention to the security of customers’ funds. If any suspicious activity is detected, users are notified

Capital One

This app follows Bank of America’s solution on the list composed by J.D. Power based on customer satisfaction. The product is positioned as a key tool for managing money regardless of users’ location. Users can view their balances, export statements, pay bills, send money to their friends and family, and monitor the state of their loans.

smart banking app
Source: Capital One

The app also has Eno, a virtual assistant that can help users to find answers to their questions. For protecting their money, bank customers can instantly lock their cards from anywhere when there are risks of financial losses.

Mobile banking app development: How to ensure security and privacy

User privacy and data protection should be viewed as top priorities in mobile banking application development. Hacker attacks can not only affect the integrity of sensitive data but also lead to serious losses. Here are a couple of ways to protect your users’ privacy and money:

  1. Introduce a two-factor or multi-factor authentication. It will act as an additional layer of app protection against the majority of common cyber threats. You can use biometric authentication as well as authentication with a short code that a user will get via an SMS or a phone call.
  2. Set requirements for strong passwords. You can require users to choose complex passwords that will contain characters of different types to properly protect access to the app.
  3. Apply data encryption. End-to-end encryption will ensure that nobody except the recipient will be able to decrypt the sent data.
  4. Take care of the code quality. Poor coding is a major cause of vulnerabilities, while error-free code significantly contributes to the high security of your mobile banking app. Moreover, developers often use third-party services to accelerate and streamline the process of building a banking app and enable specific features. It is crucial to integrate only reliable third-party services and thoroughly test the integration.
  5. Send alerts via email or SMS. It’s advisable to introduce a feature that will let your customers be notified if your system detects potential fraudulent activities on their accounts.

Challenges in mobile banking app development

Any software development process is associated with a row of challenges. And it is always better to be aware of them in advance. It will allow you to be well-prepared for addressing them.

  • Security and fraud prevention. You should bear in mind the necessity to ensure the protection of your app already at the stage of its development. But after its launch, we recommend you regularly conduct audits in order to detect potential vulnerabilities and eliminate them.
  • Clear navigation. Even if you want your app to offer numerous features, it is necessary to make it easy to interact with them. Use visual elements that will facilitate navigation and keep interfaces simple.
  • Regulatory compliance. If you want to launch a smart mobile banking app, it is important to carefully study the rules and regulations in force in your chosen jurisdiction. Your software product must comply with KYC requirements, adhere to all relevant regulations, and have all necessary licenses. The most well-known regulations are the European guidelines for collecting and processing personal information GDPR, and the CCPA, which is the US equivalent of GDPR.
  • Compatibility with various devices. Smart banking apps are targeted at a wide audience. It means that developers should make sure that their solutions will be compatible with all smartphone models regardless of the shapes and sizes of their displays, including phones with foldable screens.

Summary

Smartbanking is a concept that brings benefits to both banking organizations and their customers. Given this fact, it is reasonable to expect further growth of this segment in the banking industry.

In 2022, global mobile banking was valued at $772.96 million. It is predicted that by 2030, this figure will hit the mark of $1.8 billion. With the progress made in the AI field, smart banking applications are supposed to become more advanced and offer highly personalized experiences to all users already in the nearest future.

To keep up with the competition, now is the best time to start developing your banking application. If you have any ideas for building a banking app and you are looking for a professional development team, just drop us a line. Let’s schedule a consultation and discuss how we can help you with your project realization.

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