By Keith Hamilton | November 26, 2014
The Source Technologies team just returned from what is arguably one of the top two retail banking events in the U.S., the Chicago-held BAI Retail Delivery Show. Among the hottest topics discussed was technology in retail banks. More specifically, show leaders reviewed how implementing self-service kiosk solutions can greatly improve the bank branch customer experience. Over the last several years, banks have largely focused on mobile technology to keep up with “Consumer 3.0.” This major shift to online and mobile banking kiosk solutions has created industry arguments on whether bank branches even need to exist anymore. However, recent data shows bank executives that the smartphone-savvy, image-capture-depositing, online-researching Consumer 3.0 individual still visits bank branches, primarily to open a new account. Today, the consensus is the bank branch isn’t going anywhere…but it’s going to look very different, very soon.
Retail banks are now faced with finding a way to service the tech-savvy consumer who demands a better experience in the branch. And these tech-savvy consumers are not just Millennials. According to a presentation given by Jim Marous from The Financial Brand, Consumer 3.0 encompasses individuals of all ages who are:
To better engage new customers, retail banks are initiating “Branch Transformation” projects, which incorporate brand new branch designs, open floor plans, beverage stations, high-tech displays and self-service kiosks. Unlike ATM’s, self-service banking kiosks are located inside the branch and enable customers to conduct most (if not all) routine transactions previously completed by a bank teller. Similar to the grocery store self-checkout model, a member of the bank’s staff could easily step in and take over the transaction if a customer needed assistance.
With secure, effective mobile and online technologies in place, transforming the branch to a high-tech, high-touch retail environment is the next way to deliver quality consumer banking according to each individual’s ‘how,’ ‘when,’ and ‘where.’ Self-service banking kiosks placed in the branch allow customers to conduct their own transactions. The time saved by not having to wait in line for a teller improves the customer experience and independence. And for the bank, staff is now freed up to assist, offer financial advice, or cross-sell relevant products. It’s a win-win.
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