The revolution in banking has already begun with a variety of digital solutions available today. These solutions have bridged the gap between customers and the servicing banks by nurturing their relationships through better interactions. Earlier, customer interactions in banks were limited to physical branch visits. Today, digital means like online and mobile banking have popularised and customers have easier access to all financial services and information.
Though the digital banking channels are advancing, they are restricted to only one-way interactions between banks and customers. As this lacks the ability for banks to initiate conversations and respond to specific customer queries, two-way interactions are much-needed. The recent technological developments have simplified interactions between customers and financial service providers naturally with the help of ‘conversations’.
In view of the growing popularity of mobile apps and other banking technologies, banking relationships are being re-established through conversational interfaces. Chatbots in banking systems (i.e. computer programs that are responsible for communicating with customers) are being adopted. These programs are incorporated to respond to queries, in an understandable manner and also integrates with chat platforms like WhatsApp messenger, SMS etc.
Here’s an image highlighting the use of chatbots by some of the major Indian banks. Have a look…
Bankbots of the modern day are smarter and more sophisticated as a result of advancement in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML). They invariably help banks in streamlining communications with customers, promoting two-way interactions and providing a unified experience across all platforms.
What are the benefits of Conversational Banking?
With the ever-increasing shift in the habits of users towards mobile, conversational banking is booming in the present times. The popularity of messaging apps like WhatsApp and Facebook messenger is undeniable and so the time spent by consumers over them is also surging. As a result, financial institutions plan to invest largely in this technology in future.
Cited under are the many benefits of conversational banking:
1. Real-time interactions
Bots are built to read human language, interpret it and then come out with answers after thoroughly processing the information within – all in a fraction of seconds. This enables real-time conversations that comes naturally.
2. Lower operating costs
The costs per transaction on digital channels is significantly lower than the costs incurred on ATMs or on phone. Research suggests that an average cost of transaction online or on mobile is as less as $0.04, while it is $0.48 and $3.80 in ATM and on phone respectively.
3. Uninterrupted operations
The AI incorporated in the chatbots carry reasoning attributes that streamline conversations with customers by making them efficient – such that they need not be monitored continuously. They also make the operations smoother by being available 24/7, without any dependency on humans.
The Artificial Intelligence in conversational banking is capable of detecting fraudulent activities by tracking behaviours of users and recognizing fraud transactions.
Conversational Banking – The Future
We’ve all seen banking transform over the years – from brick-and-mortar branches to phones and now to internet and mobile apps. These technological innovations in banking sector, particularly conversational banking, have been continuously redefining the relationships between customers and the financial service providers.
Though conversational banking may still be considered in its embryonic stage, it will only evolve with more sophistication in the future. Banks and digital platforms can together promote relationship banking via streamlined conversations that ultimately enhance customer expectations.