There are 4,001 community banks with 27,511 branches across the United States. Do you run one of them?
If you manage a community bank — and you want to attract new members while retaining your existing member base — you must keep up with the latest industry trends.
Not sure where to start? The top five community banking trends for 2024 shared below will help you get ahead of the curve and provide a superior experience to your members.
1. Let Go of Legacy Systems
Legacy technology creates unnecessary headaches for you and your team, from data silos to manual workflows that suck up your time and take you away from other important tasks.
In 2024, many community banks — as well as larger financial institutions — will let go of their legacy systems and switch to omnichannel solutions that are easier to implement, more navigable, and more agile.
These tools not only make life easier for bank employees but for customers as well, as they simplify digital banking, provide access to new features, and help members complete financial management tasks more efficiently.
2. Show Your Commitment to Climate Concerns
What does banking have to do with climate change? A lot, actually.
Over 80 percent of Americans say they are at least somewhat concerned about climate change. Furthermore, 86 percent say they try to live in a way that supports the environment at least some of the time.
By showing your bank’s commitment to sustainability, you can win over a significant portion of these individuals. That’s why, in 2024, many financial institutions will introduce initiatives to reduce their carbon footprint. They will also, ideally, provide data demonstrating the impact of their efforts.
3. Enhance the Customer Experience
Customer experience will continue to be a top priority among community banks as they work to keep up with larger financial institutions in 2024.
At the end of the day, a positive customer experience is all about making life easier for your members, from introducing an easy-to-use mobile app that helps them transfer funds or pay bills to implementing new all-digital processes for more complex tasks like applying for loans.
When deciding which advancements to invest in for your customers, remember the importance of empathy. Put yourself in their shoes and look for features and updates that will help them carry out everyday banking activities more easily.
4. Invest in AI
The use of AI is on the rise across all industries, from marketing to customer service. Many banks and credit unions will increase their reliance on artificial intelligence in 2024 as they strive to provide a superior customer experience.
Incorporating AI into their everyday processes could include using chatbots to provide 24-7 customer service or assist with loan applications. AI can make life easier for human customer service reps by gathering essential information and giving them the details they need to provide more efficient support.
5. Get Ahead with VR and AR Solutions
Alongside artificial intelligence, community banks will further increase their tech-savviness in 2024 by using virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) solutions.
That’s right — VR and AR aren’t just meant for gaming. They can also improve the customer experience for bank members.
For example, community banks can use virtual reality to create virtual branches for members to attend meetings to open accounts, originate loans, receive financial advice, and more.
Banks can also use augmented reality to help with the mortgage loan process and provide visual aids to ensure customers understand exactly what they’re agreeing to when they sign those important documents.
Keep Up With Community Banking Trends Here
Regardless of the size of your community bank or the number of years you’ve been in business, it’s vital that you stay aware of the latest trends if you want your institution to thrive long-term. Start by incorporating one (or more) of the trends shared above and then follow Fintech Content to keep to to date in future!