The Belgian banking app Cake is entering the Dutch market

Today, it is crucial for banks to invest in their customers’ digital customer journey. After all, their customers expect to be helped at all times, and when they can get better service elsewhere, they are more likely to switch. And driven by fintech innovations, banks can more quickly implement new technologies that help them maintain their customer base.

But how can banks bet even more on loyalty? For example, can it be done using a digital rewards program? This is only possible if they have a data-driven service, personalized for each customer in real time. Open Banking is the answer, emphasizes Davy Kestens, CEO and co-founder of the cashback service Cake.

Because Open Banking creates value for consumers, entrepreneurs and financial institutions, according to a report by Barclays. And the possibilities are endless: “Think of new services that help people manage their finances in their banking app or access personalized offers and cashbacks based on real-time data.”

Winning and retaining customers?  Keep surprising them digitally

Loyalty goes beyond a (financial) reward

At the same time, it means more competition for the banks to retain customers. Personalization and convenience alone are not enough to keep customers loyal and connected in the long run. It is about fully understanding each and every customer journey. Why are customers affiliated with your bank? Loyalty is not only rewarded with rewards or bonuses; Loyal customers are rewarded with services that are completely tailored to them. It is the appropriate services that make the customers stay with a bank.

It is the playing field where fintechs and banks meet – and can even complement each other. For where banks focus on daily services and maintaining their customer relationship, fintechs can develop new applications to continue to surprise customers. “The big advantage is that the banks spend less time and money on this, while at the same time letting a specialist partner get started in realizing a new functionality,” says Kestens.

I’m going on a trip and I’m taking …

In the past, banks have independently sought to add new services to increase customer loyalty. For example, by using coupons or money-back promotions. But customer satisfaction and engagement often suffered greatly from a slow user experience (UX). As a result, banks were quickly inclined to stop extra services with low opt-in and activation rates early.

Today it is a completely different story. New technology and access to payment data in real time removes friction and creates a fluid user-friendliness for bank customers. Kestens: “For cashbacks, these are personalized, fully automated and with respect for privacy. The experience has changed, and so have banking apps. Consumers everywhere expect the same convenience that they are used to from, for example, online shopping. ”

The partnership with fintechs brings undeniable benefits to banks and their customers. From hassle-free treatment, increased security and more privacy to personalized services. By leveraging the added value of a fintech, banks can offer their customers additional rewards that increase loyalty. “But the banks themselves are also getting a new stream of revenue from the data that they can access and use in new ways,” says Kestens. “It paves the way for more data-driven decisions and even more attention to bank customers’ wishes.”

Help from fintechs

Large retail banks have been thinking in these lanes for some time now. That is why Argenta bank is one of the leading players in the Belgian market, using the power of Open Banking. Using an API, they offer Cakes cashback service in their own banking app. Through a single platform, bank customers can keep track of their finances, make adjustments where necessary and get money back based on insights from statements.

“Banks have probably long feared that fintechs will compete with their own offerings. However, this is no less true: Fintechs can help banks survive the turbulent times of the 21st century and emerge victorious. It requires a strong focus on the bank customer with reliable technology, ”concludes Kestens.

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