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What Financial Institutions Need to Know to Budget for 2023 and Beyond

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It’s that time of year again. The time where companies across the board start their yearly planning and carve out their budgets for the months to come. And, just like every other business, bank and credit union leaders usually have a specific picture of how the next few years should play out. In fact, it probably has a really big focus on mobile banking.

But before your institution gets too excited about throwing all its eggs into the mobile banking basket, there are a few things you might want to consider.

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Mobile Banking Has Some Gravitational Pull

Post COVID mobile and digital are the new buzz words in banking. It’s no secret that nationwide shutdowns in 2020 significantly boosted mobile adoption. Today over 75 percent of account holders use their institution’s mobile application as their primary venue for accessing accounts. Even older generations who have been historically slow to adopt new technologies were forced to use online and remote banking options to maintain ongoing control of their accounts.

As consumers continue to rely on their phones and keyboards for communication, interaction and banking, the tasks they demand are becoming equally complex. Gen Z, especially has growing expectations for more complex tasks like loan applications, financial tracking, budgeting and finding ATMs.

Wait a Second… ‘Finding ATMs’?

Oh, you read that right. Generation Z thinks locating a surcharge-free ATM should be a part of their mobile banking application. But ‘why?’ you might ask. Let’s look at the numbers.

· The majority of consumers under the age of 40 consider ATM network access a primary consideration when searching for a primary financial institution.

· Over half (62%) of consumers say they prefer to bank with institutions that have a physical presence.

· 45% of Generation Z prefer to use cash.

· 33% of Gen Z see cash as a way to stay in control of their finances.

· Consumers 18-34 visit an ATM to get cash more than 7 times per month.

This reliance on ATMs and self-service is not a failure of digital or mobile banking. Rather, it is a product of this new infrastructure. After the pandemic, a large chunk of Millennials and Gen Z reported turning to banking machines like ATMs and ITMs (interactive teller machines) as a way to perform more in-depth financial services – as well as grab and deposit cash.

The pandemic took away in-person banking. But branches equipped with drive-ups, ATMs at “essential” businesses and stand-alone kiosks were fair game. Account holders have learned to use and rely on these self-service options in the same way they turned to mobile banking applications.

So, What Now?

Banks and credit unions cutting back on “traditional” banking channels to sink their budgets into mobile applications may want to reconsider their strategy. There is more to remote banking than a digital presence, and account holders expect to see their financial institution brand in more places than on their phone.

Fortunately, there are ways to meet account holder’s self-service demands without completely destroying the means for mobile innovation. Reliable ATM outsourcing partners have options and opportunities for banks and credit unions to provide exactly what their account holder’s crave, and even help grow the brand.

Bottomline: While mobile banking in growing and money should be allocated to improving that channel, institutions should carefully consider the younger generation’s demand for physical brand presence, ATMs and cash as well when crafting their budgets for 2023 and beyond.


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