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Self-serve payment technology was developed and continues to evolve as a way to bring convenience and efficiency to consumers, businesses, and financial institutions. From a business standpoint, giving consumers and account holders a way to seamlessly make their loan payments, transfer funds across accounts, pay bills, and send money from peer to peer provides value and can create operational efficiencies.
For some financial institutions, however, increasing account holder adoption of proprietary payment systems can be a challenge. Much like moving a banking relationship from one institution to another, consumers can find it tedious and time consuming to transition their bill pay and peer-to-peer payment activity from existing websites and apps. With a concerted and strategic marketing effort, your financial institution can increase self-serve payment adoption across your account holder population. Here are a few ways to notify account holders that they have convenient payment options available to fit their busy schedules.
It’s important to educate your account holders on the aspects of your payments tool that are unique. For example, if you have a single sign-on feature, express pay, or guest payments, make sure your borrowers and account holders know how convenient and easy your payments tool can make their lives.
Example Website or Email Copy:
“Not ready to register for a payment account? Quickly pay your loan using our ‘Express Pay’ feature. While registering affords additional features, we also realize that some borrowers prefer to create a single payment. Either way, we have you covered.”
Leverage as many channels as you have at your disposal to promote your payments platform and features.
If you send out eblasts to your new borrowers to welcome them to your financial institution, you could add a callout text with instructions on how to log on to your online payment portal or provide the phone number to make a payment.
Obviously, in our current state of social distancing and limited business openings, in-branch transactions have decreased, but as the country continues to open up throughout the rest of the year, brick-and-mortar institutions can take the opportunity to leverage their customer service and first-hand knowledge of their customer base in order to market their payment options.
Inform your account holders they have multiple payment options via posters, flyers, or promo tents at your teller stands. While borrowers are waiting in line to either make a payment on their loan account or make any other type of transaction, they will get all of the details to learn about the options available to them.
Hold times for service calls have increased across the financial services industry. While your account holders are on-hold, leverage the opportunity to inform or remind them of your various self-serve channels and payment options.
According to National Cash Systems, there are over 10 billion transactions annually in the U.S. With that amount of traffic, particularly in the wake of social distancing and consumers taking measures to avoid unnecessary contact, your financial institution has likely seen an uptick in ATM usage. When your account holders visit your ATMs, you have a prime opportunity to market payment options to them. Take this opportunity to let them know that you have multiple, convenient loan options available.
Example ATM message:
“Why wait? Make your loan payments online or over the phone. Visit [INSERT YOUR WEBSITE ADDRESS] for more details.”
Taking advantage of the digital channels you have available at your fingertips is a great way to promote payment channels to your membership. It affords you the opportunity to reach consumers that may not be existing account holders but may be considering making a financial institution switch. Some examples of digital promotion include:
Adding banners and call-to-action buttons throughout your website
Promoting the channels and payment methods on your social media accounts
Creating short, upbeat “how-to” video tutorials that demonstrate how easy it is to use your payment tools
If you’re willing to dedicate a budget to promote your financial institution to new potential account holders, you could even run paid social media, search engine marketing (SEM), or display ads to help drive new user traffic to your website.
While social distancing measures are beginning to subside in some areas of the country, it could be a while before financial institution branches completely reopen. Moving the needle on customer acquisition of self-service payments channels can benefit your institution and your account holders in many ways.
To learn how SWBC Payments can give you and your account holders a seamless and secure payment experience, click below to see our platform in action!
Jeff joined SWBC in 2004 to provide service in Ohio, Michigan, and surrounding Midwest states. Jeff has more than 30 years of business client relations experience, which includes a background in insurance through Equitable Life Assurance Society and operations for a records management and document storage company that served financial institutions. His experience and vast knowledge of the financial industry has helped deliver products that increase revenue for financial institutions, as well as bundle products so clients receive the greatest benefit without increasing distribution cost. Jeff is a graduate of Central Michigan University and The American College, and he holds a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU) designation.
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