In 2019, finance apps accounted for 4.5% of global app downloads.
By the end of 2020, the number of downloads had increased by 15%.
The simple answer is the COVID-19 pandemic.
Because of the global lockdown, people spent more time online and an increasing amount of time on their phones. It’s no surprise that app downloads rocketed.
The increase in downloads of financial service apps coupled with access to free online financial services like The Motley Fool means that consumers in 2021 are more financially aware than before the pandemic.
So, what does this mean for the future of finance apps?
It’s hard to say for sure. Customer needs fluctuate, and the industry can change at any moment.
But based on what we’ve learned from 2021, we can predict what the future will look like and how this will impact consumers.
So keep reading to find out what we think the future of finance apps will look like and what this means for the consumers using them.
What are finance apps?
“Finance app” is an umbrella term for any application that helps businesses or individuals manage money.
Here are a few examples:
- Mobile banking: Mobile banking apps allow users to track their cash flow, send and receive money, and manage multiple accounts.
- Budget management: With budget management apps, users can keep their spending in check.
- Accounts payable/receivable: Mostly used by accounting departments, accounts payable and receivable apps allow users to automate invoice processing and ensure that payments are received on time.
- Payroll: Often used by HR and accounting professionals, payroll apps allow businesses to manage staff payments and wages, including taxes, leave accruals, and pensions.
- Investments and trading: Investment and trading apps display information about publicly traded companies to help users identify where it’s best to invest their money.
The future of finance apps
With the way things have been going in 2021, things are looking good for the future of finance apps.
Sure, the road ahead might look different now than before the pandemic, but that’s not a bad thing.
Let’s examine what we can expect for the future of finance apps and how this will impact consumers in 2022 and beyond.
Traditional and modern banking will combine into single apps
There’s a lot of narrative suggesting that consumers must choose between traditional and modern banking.
Based on recent developments with financial apps, this isn’t the case.
Take a look at MinePlex, for example.
MinePlex offers consumers the best of both worlds. It has the stability and liquidity of traditional banking with the innovation of modern technology.
It allows users to make transfers, convert currency, and spend money both online and offline. Simply put, users can manage all their digital assets with this app.
This is a prime example of how fintech combines modern and traditional banking. Consumers now have a solution that offers both of these options in one location.
With the heightened use of financial apps to manage digital transactions, we expect many financial institutions to follow suit in 2022. As a result, consumers will have seamless access to their finances and assets.
Customer experience will be more important than ever
Because of the pandemic, customers have high expectations regarding the products and services they use.
Studies show they’re much more tech-savvy, meaning that they’re selective with the online services they use and the level of service they expect.
So what can finance apps do to meet customer needs and improve the customer experience?
Here are a few suggestions:
- Understand what your customers want: To provide the best experience possible, you need to figure out what your customers want. Find out if there are any gaps in your app or services you don’t currently offer that would make the experience better for your customers.
- Create explainer videos: Videos are a great way to engage customers and provide them with an easy-to-follow explanation of your services. In fact, 95% of consumers have watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service.
- Have a customer experience developer: 32% of companies hire dedicated developers to improve apps and software for the customer experience. It’s a great way to ensure you’re focused on improving the app’s usability.
Cost-savings will be a key focus for millennials
Millennials are looking for ways to save money. 95% say they search for coupons before an online transaction.
But what does this have to do with finance apps?
Millennials are the largest age group to use mobile banking apps.
So if you want to appeal to this audience, you should be thinking about how you can help them save money.
Look at Monzo as an example.
The online banking app allows users to categorize their spending. This helps them manage their budget and identify areas of cost-saving in their day-to-day lives.
Users can also save money by rounding up their transactions.
If you spend $15.49 on a pizza, Monzo will automatically put 51¢ into your savings.
Other mobile banking apps offer incentives to consumers, giving them discounts at restaurants and entertainment venues.
These simple cost-saving features can help you attract more customers and give your customers a better experience.
App prices will be competitive
In such a competitive marketplace, financial apps need to be priced accordingly.
In other words, if your app is too expensive, chances are consumers will find a cheaper alternative.
So how should you price your app?
When it comes to price optimization, there are a couple of things you can do to make sure you’re pricing your app accordingly:
- Review your competitors: Keeping an eye on what your competitors are charging is a great way to make sure you’re not overcharging.
- Understand your costs: Charging a competitive price only works if it covers your costs and makes you a profit. To do this, you need a solid understanding of what your costs are and how much profit you want to make.
To be clear, we’re not saying you shouldn’t ever charge more than your competitors. There might be a time where it’s justified, and consumers will be willing to pay more. For example, if your financial app has a service that your competitors don’t offer.
If so, you might get away with charging more. But if there’s nothing drastically different from your competitors, you probably don’t want to charge consumers a higher rate.
Spending on cybersecurity will continue to increase
Given that cyberattacks have been more prevalent since the pandemic, it’s no surprise that the fintech industry has invested $3.7 billion in cybersecurity for 2021.
And this figure is only from January until June, so we expect it to have increased by the end of the year.
This monumental spend on cybersecurity is a win-win for everyone involved (except the cyber attackers, of course). Financial apps will keep consumer data safe, and consumers can rest easy knowing their data is protected.
And with 86% of consumers concerned about data privacy, they’ll be pleased to know financial apps are keeping their data as safe as possible.
So, what can you do to keep consumer data safe in your finance app?
Ideally, you’d create a cybersecurity strategy that’ll outline your top-level plans for securing digital assets and minimizing cyber risks. It should be a document that’s often revisited and adaptable to the current landscape and trends within cyber security.
Here are a few areas you might want to cover in your strategy:
- Determine your goals. What are you aiming to achieve with your strategy? Be clear about this from the start so you can determine the successes and failures of your activity.
- Outline best practices. What are your best practices for data protection? Confirm what these are so everyone knows how to keep user data as safe as possible.
- Only store relevant data. There’s no use storing customer data you don’t need, so only collect information that’s relevant to the app.
These are just a few areas you might want to consider as part of your strategy. The specifics of what you include will depend on the type of app you’ve created and the user data you need to store.
Create an innovative and modern finance app with AppsGeyser
So there you have it. You’ve now got a pretty good understanding of the current landscape for financial apps and what we can expect to happen in the future.
As we mentioned, things can change. This is just a prediction based on what we know so far. To ensure that your app is as successful as possible, you need to continually review trends in the marketplace along with consumer behavior.
If you don’t, you risk losing customers to competitors.
Thinking about creating a finance app? Take a look at our app maker to get started. We provide everything you need to design free Android apps without using a single piece of code.
Reid Burns has his roots in the supply chain, handling global teams for private label companies. He has since transitioned to freelance work, providing thought leadership in the e-Commerce domain.