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3 important steps for improving customer onboarding in financial services apps

Kathryn WhartonFintech

Successfully onboarding app users is one of the biggest challenges facing financial services companies. 

One in two consumers is now using a mobile-first financial service but with 49% of users abandoning an app after just one day, onboarding is a critical component of user retention. 

It covers everything from the time it takes to install and register on an app (which 72% of users think should be less than a minute) to demonstrating to users just how you will solve their problems and/or make their lives easier. 

But with complex compliance and regulatory issues to manage, it can be difficult to make onboarding of financial services apps a smooth process. 

Following years of experience in financial services app development, our development team believes three important steps can improve the onboarding process for financial services apps. 

Think like a customer

As the subject matter expert in your field, it’s hard to view an app as your customer would. They might have very little knowledge about the products you offer or limited digital skills that impact their confidence in using mobile banking, insurance or investment platforms. 

Our team can help you to think like your customer and see your product from their point of view. During the discovery phase of development, we’ll get a detailed understanding of your customers’ wants, needs and technical abilities and feed those into the design of your app. 

User experience research and testing ensures design prototypes meet user needs and that the end product will engage your target audience. 

By putting your user at the centre of the design process, you’re much more likely to create an app that they want to use time and time again. 

Use friendly language

As well as thinking like a customer, it’s important to speak like them. 

Customers greeted with complex financial terminology during the onboarding process can be deterred from using the app, feeling that they don’t have the knowledge or capabilities to navigate it. They also want to feel welcomed and at ease when using the app. 

For example, Monzo uses “pots” to refer to the function that allows its users to segregate their account balance and transactions into different savings accounts. The Halifax banking app simply says “see you later” rather than more formal language like “you’ve been signed out”.

Our content designers and developers can help you to create user-friendly language that matches the knowledge level of your target user. You can retain the formal terminology in your back-office business systems but simple changes on the user interface of the app can make all the difference to long-term customer retention. 

Educate your customer

Financial services apps need to give users the confidence to bank and invest knowledgeably. 

However, strict regulations that limit product recommendations and financial advice mean the content and design of an app needs to be carefully considered. 

The key is to educate users and give them the content needed to make informed decisions. 

That could include a glossary of terminology, pop-up boxes to explain transaction limits or Plain English explanations of the financial products you offer. 

This goes for collecting personal data, too. All financial services apps have to ask their users for a large amount of personal information in order to set up their accounts. It’s important that users understand why you are asking for this and are reassured that their data will be handled safely. 

If a user is overwhelmed by complex content while onboarding, they’re unlikely to keep using the app. Educating them through clear content and intuitive user flows will make the user experience much more positive. 

Get in touch

If you want to learn more about how our experienced team of mobile app development experts can improve the performance of your app, get in touch today.

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