Financial Technology, better known by its catchier name Fintech, is one of the fastest growing industries today and as with emerging technologies come new trends. Fintech has evolved exponentially over the past few years, working its way into every facet of our daily lives.
Trends in fintech are worth observing for nearly every business in the industry – those that act on new opportunities as soon as they arise will be the first to profit. And many new opportunities exist within fintech, both for startups and established institutions.
Fintech apps have become a regular part of consumer life thanks in part to Acorn, M1 Finance, and Current. But what trends are making these and other fintech apps relevant? Here's an overview of some significant trends that only look to be getting bigger as we move into 2020.
Banks Are Innovating
For a long time, banks weren't so keen to look into new technologies. They were more concerned with surviving the Great Recession, complying with new laws, and data security. Now that they've gotten back onto more stable grounds, banks are trying to play catch-up in the technology sector. Banks are hiring technologists and partnering with fintech startups to push for new innovations in the field. We even see banks that operate entirely online, like Current.
Although we haven't seen a considerable change in the way banks operate, we've seen the movement toward banking apps and other finance apps like those previously mentioned. It only makes sense that we'll continue to see more significant changes into the new decade.
A Greater Appeal to Millennials
Millennials make up the majority of the workforce, and their finances are becoming more and more important not only to the individual but to the global economy. The finance sector is moving its marketing efforts to appeal to this group, mainly in its technologies. There are now countless apps for all things finance, from banking apps to saving and spending trackers, credit score monitors, and even apps assisting with mortgage lending and student loans.
As millennials continue to advance their careers and become more invested in their financial futures, banks and fintech as a whole will continue to change their ways to appeal to this target demographic.
In the past, you had to wait until payday to get your money. But emerging technologies mean this is no longer the case. Apps like Earnin and PayActiv allow customers to access a portion of their paycheck early at an affordable rate. Since almost three-quarters of customers access their bank mostly online, it's no surprise that these payroll-advance apps are quickly growing in popularity.
Other money management apps go hand-in-hand with these new technologies, and we should keep seeing this flexibility and personalization impact future developments.
Now that it's so much easier to access your money than it was in the past, the world of investing doesn't seem quite so intimidating. With apps like Acorn, customers can rollover the change from their everyday purchases via their debit cards and start investing. This robo-advisor does all the hard work, leaving the customer to sit back and watch their wealth grow.
As millennials begin to look more closely at the future, apps like Acorn make it easy to get started in the world of investing without much real effort. All they have to do is link a bank account, and they likely won't even miss the spare change.
Push for Improved Customer Experience
Since we all live on our phones, there is an ever-growing push to improve customer experience. If you don't have a robust website or you can't do all your business in one place, there's little chance of success. It is unavoidable that companies today have to have a seamless and comfortable user interface, providing a quick and straightforward experience. The finance world is not immune to these needs, and they perhaps need to pay more attention than any other sector.
Everyone deals with money, so there's high demand in the financial sector. Banks and other financial operations have to keep up with the trends in order to draw an audience. If a company can't provide an easy, affordable, and streamlined experience, they won't be able to meet their customer's expectations.
All of these trends come together to demand one thing: customization. Every user has their own individual needs, and everyone is on the hunt for a service that will check all the boxes. Staying on top of these digital trends is keeping apps like Acorn and Current in business, and other financial institutions have to keep up if they hope to see success in the coming decade.
As 2020 draws near, there is no limit to the technological growth we'll see. As always, new trends and new priorities will lead to changes in the financial sector. Apps that are successful today can only hope to continue their path if they remain vigilant of new trends.