Why banks should consider investing in digital customer engagement services

Why banks should consider investing in digital customer engagement services

Every industry has had to respond to increased demand for positive customer experiences and banking is no different. Here, Mathias Holzinger, GM TeamViewer Austria, outlines how the banking sector has adapted to this increased need for strong customer service, as well as the key elements required of a digital engagement platform.

Why is customer experience so important for organisations today? 

Customer experience is vital for organisations as it helps retain existing customers and attract new ones looking to move their business elsewhere. In addition, a good customer experience turns a customer into a fan, spreading the message about your business and recommending you to others. According to research, customers are willing to pay a premium for a great customer experience and convenience. 

How has the banking sector adapted to this increased need for strong customer service? 

Banks worldwide are currently reducing the number of branches. In Europe, a quarter of the 165,000 bank branches that presently exist will be closed in the next three years, which is around 40,000 branches. Banks are a traditional or conservative industry that must adapt and introduce strong customer service capability. Other industries are already showcasing what they can achieve digitally and this is where banks need to adapt.

In banking, we see three different scenarios of customer service. The first one includes customers asking for an ad hoc service, such as blocking their credit card, wherein a call centre is active and supports the conversation. 

The second scenario involves ad hoc online consultations, which refer a prospect who is interested in a product to a website to conduct a quick consultation to find the right one. 

The third scenario includes a scheduled online consultation with video calls for personal check-in; these are more consultation related. However, these are not as accessible as one may think. The whole banking sector is amid a transition towards Digital Transformation and more conservative markets are slowly catching up.

Can you talk us through a few highlights of your 2021 Customer Banking Survey?

In 2021 we conducted a banking survey wherein we questioned and surveyed 2,500 people across the DACH region across all age groups. This region tends to be more traditional and less digital. One of the relevant findings from our survey indicated that customers still want to do the more complex banking tasks such as taking a loan or signing for a house-building project in-person at the branch. However, the dynamic of bank branch closures is hitting the desire customers have for banks. 

What can banks do to create the same secure, trustful online experience similar to what they provided in the branch? This area has a lot of potential.

Another finding highlighted the importance of customer service for the perception of customers in relation to loyalty. Customers need and expect professional help and customer service from a bank; they want the bank to be there for them.

What are the consequences for banks that don’t invest in digital customer engagement services?

Research shows that bad experiences or not state-of-the-art experiences drive customers away. Unfortunately, this is happening a lot faster than banks might imagine. At the end of the day, banks that don’t invest in digital customer engagement services will lose their competitive advantage in the market, eventually losing their customers. 

What are some of the key elements required in a digital engagement platform?

Firstly, engagement can happen in different ways and in different scenarios. For example, the scenario can include conducting voice and video calls or chat and text-based communication. Different ways of collaboration are needed for each situation. For instance, co-browsing to simplify access to the right form or document collaboration capabilities to review or fill out a contract together. 

Additionally, e-signature capabilities are required to have a case-closing conversation and sign a contract during a video interaction. Another example is automation with AI to automate routine questions in a chat, routing incoming workload from the chat and distributing it among team members and appointment scheduling.

How do you ensure customer trust?

The essential element here is customisability. Banks want to provide a trusted experience, especially those with a strong brand. 

It is important to make sure that it feels like the customer is talking to the brand and not merely feeling that their personal communication is going to some other channel with someone else listening in. Customisability is critical in ensuring that the customer journey looks like the overall brand.

How does TeamViewer Engage provide all these services?

As TeamViewer, we consider ourselves as a partner. We listen and try to understand the bank’s current situation. Then we collaboratively find ways to achieve the desired goal. Our asset platform provides a full suite of end-to-end solutions for different scenarios as a product. It starts with omnichannel customer service capabilities for conducting online consultations, providing real-time service or consultation directly on the website when the customer needs it in the moment, and more. 

Overall, our integrated solutions can fit right into the existing application landscape that may exist within the bank and provide those exact customisation options so that it feels like the customer is interacting with your brand, not with us.

What kind of results could a customer using the platform expect?

Consultation or sales-oriented use cases generally drive gross profit, so customers can expect their online revenue to increase. They will be able to digitally transform the in-branch consultation experience to online and make that transition happen. 

Looking at customer service, which requires making processes more efficient by automation or just overall business logic to provide a better customer experience, we drive operational efficiency for automation and clear business processes that will provide our solutions. Companies can expect a state-of-the-art customer experience in the digital customer engagement efforts and improve overall customer satisfaction.

Finally, what advice would you offer organisations in the banking sector on how to build long-term brand loyalty?

My advice is simple – listen to your customers and listen to the market. Be responsive, be there when your customers need you. People can achieve long-term brand loyalty if they feel aligned with those principles. 

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