A Branch is OK, but “Digital” is What Seals the Deal

There remains much confusion among financial institutions, especially smaller ones, about how Millennials are making their choices. While I usually agree wholeheartedly with Ron Shevlin’s point of view, I’m not so sure that his latest piece (below) will help with any of that confusion, especially where “digital” plays in all of this.

The fact that “Digital Banks” have minor market share seems beside the point. We know from years of financial services consumer survey work that folks are not getting the help and guidance from their banks and credit unions that they would like to have. This is a global phenomenon! Chinese, Brazilians, Spaniards and Americans (among others) would all say the same thing.

So Millennials, being digital natives, use whatever mobile services from whatever providers they find to inch themselves up the guidance and engagement banking curve. A branch remains a site of last resort (and a poor substitute for real time engagement and guidance because it is not where the person is while a smartphone is). The fact that primary checking somehow is a metric on how branchless digital banks are progressing seems less important when many Millenials don’t see the importance of checking in the first place.


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