When you walk into a financial institution, what do you see—an assembly line of friendly tellers ready to assist? A field of beige cubicle walls? A sea of eye-catching graphics promoting your brand message in new and exciting ways for your customers and employees?
But wait—why would you want to wrap a building with graphics like a sporting event?
Because, like a sporting event, banking is an experience. You want your customers to understand who you are as a business, what sets you apart from other financial institutions and what they can do for you. The easiest and quickest way to leave a lasting impression is by communicating your bank’s brand through impactful visuals.
By 2020, Gen-Z and millennials will be the largest groups among customers buying houses for the first time and taking more financial resources into their own hands. These two up-and-coming generations love with their eyes. Their multitasking and tech-savvy skills help them figure out problems independently. They also will do research upfront in choosing a bank that’s right for them before walking in your doors. To make your financial institution stand out for your younger audiences, you’ll need your bank or credit union to be current with design and tech trends in both digital and physical environments.
Think Short- and Long-Term
When thinking about your bank or credit union’s future, what areas of your building could change in the next two, five, 10 years? By addressing what areas are permanent and temporary, there are a wide array of options to consider:
- For long-term stays, custom window graphics like the ones Epicosity created for Voyage Federal Credit Union (see below) make a bold, inviting statement for both your customers and employees.
- For short-term stays, consider tradeshow or hanging banners that can easily move with you to your new space.
Staying in the same location, but with frequently mobile departments? Acrylic sign-holders with your brand’s style can help people find their way through your branch or stay up-to-date with upcoming events with little to no setup cost.
Test Out High-Traffic Areas
If you were able to make a heat map of where most of your branch foot traffic lies, you’d likely want to make an impression in these two physical areas—your main entrance and ATMs.
With your main entrance, welcoming your customers in less than 10 seconds is essential to a great customer service experience. One of the easiest ways to communicate your services and events is through TV monitor graphics and videos. This medium grabs attention right away and keeps your customers engaged while they wait. Another bonus? There are no printing costs, and the files can be easily transferred or swapped out to all of your bank’s branches in a short amount of time.
And when it comes to your self-serve kiosks, ATMs can be wrapped in graphics to create a unique focal point that makes customers want to use it.
What’s equally important (and in many cases, more important) to your customers to a physical location is your online banking experience. According to DBR Research, the top 2018 strategic priority for the banking industry is to redesign/enhance digital experience for consumers (72 percent). To help with this digital evolution of banking, opt for a growth-driven-design approach to your bank’s website—every two to three months, evaluate your website’s traffic and make decisions based on your customer’s visiting patterns. This will improve their experience through strategy and design.
Planning ahead for your company and customers is essential in moving your institution forward. By addressing how your bank can evolve in the ever-changing financial market through researching design and strategy solutions, your business actions will put you in front of your competition and, in return, build trust from the inside out as a forward-thinking financial institution putting its customers' needs first.
Sources: UX Design Agency, DBR Research