It’s that popularity and convenience that’s making mobile banking a service offered by most financial institutions, including remittance services, e-wallets and centuries-old banks.
Splitting the dinner bill with friends, cheque deposits and utility payments are easy to do wherever you are. Some apps have more functionality than others, with added benefits like investing or automatic saving and debit features that make personal finance simpler than it was before.
As convenient as it is, you do need to stop and consider that you are managing your hard-earned savings through an app. It’s important to look beyond surface-level accessibility and put measures in place to make your transactions safe and secure.
Banks provide security features by installing two-factor authentication and one-time pin generators into their apps, as well as building in tools developed specifically for consumer protection. It’s up to you to choose the app that will cover you and protect you from fraud, theft and scams and use the tools provided to move your money safely.
Why do consumers love mobile banking?
The popularity of mobile banking continues to increase with the rise of smartphones and app culture. The more consumers use them, the smarter and more efficient these applications get, forcing service providers and institutions to prioritise them as part of their business offering.
Mobile banking provides an opportunity to cut out the middleman, saving time and money as well as giving you more choice on how you manage your money. You can set custom alerts that help you stay on top of your finances with notifications on a wide range of services including when bank balances are getting low or when bills are due.
Aside from your phone’s end-to-end transactions, advancements in fintech also assist with tax calculations and global market and share trades.
5 things you need to look for in mobile banking
It seems like every so often there’s a buzzy new app promising to make things quicker than your current service, but it’s important to be discerning about what features it improved and which ones it axed.
There are plenty of apps and app features to choose from. Knowing which are the quality features can help you separate the must-haves from the fads.
1. Convenient account management
The whole point of using mobile banking is to have access to your account 24/7.
There are a number of features that should be available on your mobile banking app to let you monitor credit cards and bank accounts, check balances, view transaction histories and transfer funds from anywhere at any time including:
- New account enrollments
- Withdrawals and Deposits
- Interest rate calculation
- QR payments
- Loan management
With the right features, you only need to visit a bank branch for these services if absolutely necessary, say you need to clarify something with your account.
2. Secure and updated transactions
For a more personal mobile banking experience, you will be required to share personal information with your service provider in exchange for a more customer-centred experience, but there are some risks.
Fintech has been developed to reduce the risk of sharing personal financial data online -identity theft and conduct risk to name a few – but mobile banking has its own share of threats to be wary of.
Online hackers see value in working into personal banking information to conduct scams, steal online assets or hijack your personal details. Without the proper protection, your data and finances may be exposed to a variety of frauds and misrepresentations.
One of the things to consider when using fintech is that your mobile banking provider has diligent cybersecurity measures in place to detect and handle hacker threats, especially given the dangers of privacy breaches and lack of regulation for digital financial services.
3. Added control of your money
Some mobile banking apps provide more functions, like depositing a check to your account by taking a picture. These features also give you more ways to secure your money in case of untoward events.
Mobile apps connected to traditional banks often require a username and password to sign into their app and offer additional measures to further safeguard your account, so while you have access to all your account information, no one else does.
One example of this is multifactor authentication which requires at least two kinds of verification to prove that it’s really you logging in. You input the account credentials (username and password) and then get a text with a numeric code sent to your phone which you type in to access the account.
You can also use an activation switch in your app to activate or deactivate your card in case it’s missing or stolen, a much better alternative to waiting on hold with a call centre, hoping to get a customer service representative on the line. Some mobile banking apps can even allow you to order a replacement card within the app as well.
As well as added control of your finances, mobile banking monitors your account for fraud and notifies you of potentially suspicious activity in real-time. Apps send you alerts before transactions push through or when your account details have been used to sign up for shops or services so you can take immediate action if you weren’t the one making the changes.
4. Easy bill and IOU payments
Everything from splitting the bill for a meal with friends to scheduling your utility bill payments can be automated from a mobile bank.
IOUs are simpler with person-to-person (P2P) transfers on mobile banking apps. You can send money quickly and easily to friends and family straight from your phone with only the recipient’s email address and mobile number to have money in their account within minutes.
Familiar mobile payment apps include PayPal and Wise, which transfer from person to person or entity to entity. Other apps can also make funds available between financial apps or person to app platforms like the Cash App from Square.
Since most people have multiple accounts and various transactions in motion, it’s handy to have a mobile banking app that allows you to collate your bills in one place. That way you don’t have to keep track of separate payment accounts every month. You can also opt to add schedule billers to pay, create one-time, advanced or recurring payments and set reminders for upcoming bill due dates.
Fund transfers within mobile phone apps are quick and simple to use and have little to no associated costs, including bank-to-bank transfers if you have multiple accounts. This is handy if you have accounts for different purposes or are in the process of switching providers.
These typically take more time than instantaneous account-to-account transfers, but waiting a few minutes or at the longest, a day still beats taking time out of your day to visit a branch, stand in line and have to explain your personal financial needs to someone over a counter.
5. Optimised finances
Once you give permission for mobile banking providers to store your information in their database, they can personalise their recommendations and improve your overall experience on the app.
From there you can explore options for more rewarding ways to store and grow money – like investing – which also becomes easier when you can see your options and make investments using apps.
Some apps will send automated messages that guide you through the offers so you can select the option that suits you, or offer features that rank which account type would work best for you, based on your provided information.
Just because you are using an app for your banking doesn’t mean you can’t also stay in touch in person. You can get advice and support from a human when you need it, especially when you’re looking to resolve concerns like credit card bill disputes.
Mobile banking is impacting the way consumers track, control and access finances, providing faster and more efficient service while making financial management simpler. Even though convenience is a prime advantage, it’s important to make sure one of the key features provided through your mobile app is for safeguarding your money and personal information.
Trust still matters in financial services, mobile banking only presents a different way to handle your money and make banking more accessible. When you can rely on your provider to make the most of your information, you can expect:
- Convenient account management
- Secure and timely transactions
- More financial control and choice
- Easy bill and IOU payments
- Optimised finances
Mobile banking is primed to progress beyond its initial functions and it’s going to make growing your savings easier than it’s ever been.
If you are interested in understanding your mobile banking options and seeing how flexible and lucrative modern gold holding can be, simply download our app. We’ll help you strike gold in your financial journey.