Financial technology, or fintech, has changed how consumers interact with online merchants as well as how they interact with their very own money, investments, and more. If you’ve ever utilized Apple Pay after forgetting your wallet at the grocery store, split a happy hour check with your coworkers through Venmo, or deposited a hand-signed check through your bank’s mobile application, you’ve participated in the ever-growing world of fintech.
However, digital financial services platforms and fintech startups still fall short of meeting their overall goals for users when designed without adequate research and intention. That’s why it’s essential to prioritize user-friendly design when creating any type of fintech application.
To be effective in the realm of fintech-specific UX/UI design, you must have a general understanding of fintech applications’ aims, identify the needs of your users, and pinpoint the purpose and goals for your fintech UX/UI design.
It’s incredibly vital to prioritize user research and user design when you’re designing a user-centered fintech app, such as a banking app. Whether you are someone in the banking field looking to produce a fintech product or a designer who is unfamiliar with fintech design, this article will help you understand why fintech companies ought to prioritize user-centered design in the realm of personal finance, mobile banking, and more. It’ll also show you some ways to produce user-focused designs in the world of fintech.
What is Fintech and What is the Fintech Ecosystem?
According to Investopedia, financial technology (fintech) is a term that is generally “used to describe new tech that seeks to improve and automate the delivery and use of financial services.”1
In general, fintech (finance and technology) aims to automate and modernize the way that people interact with and handle their finances. Fintech companies also strive to address specific needs in the financial space. This may include streamlining existing banking services, helping users make payments, obtaining loans, depositing checks online, using a new currency (such as a cryptocurrency), investing, budgeting, managing their portfolio, and more.
How Does Fintech Technology Work?
The way that fintech works depend on the particular application or program you are using, the purpose of the application or program, its target audience, and other factors.
Though the term “fintech” once primarily described the back-end technologies of large financial institutions, the term encompasses more consumer-based technologies in the modern world. Fintech now may cover technology utilized in different sectors and industries, including (but not limited to):2
- Retail banking.
- Peer-to-peer lending.
- Fundraising and nonprofit.
- Investment/portfolio management.
- Cryptocurrency creation and use.
Fintech allows users who may otherwise have not been able to complete specific actions for or through a financial institution or other finance-related entity the ability to complete these actions. In some instances, fintech companies are using conventional lenders for the mechanics of moving cash.2
Contributions of Fintech Companies That Revitalize the Banking Customer Experience
There are various contributions that fintech companies make that satisfy certain pain points of traditional banking customers.
In terms of UX design, to help their users feel more safe and secure while using their platform. A user-centric approach to fintech is essential in a world of fears revolving around privacy breaches, information hacking, and more. So, when designing for fintech, you must consider your customers’ security at the forefront of your user-centered design efforts as an integral part of the solution.
Advantages of Using Fintech UX
Besides improving the customer experience of your fintech platform, UX in the world of fintech can help you stand out from your competitors. It’ll also help you provide democratization of access to financial products, help provide flexibility and save you valuable time and money.
For example, designing a fintech interface with your target user(s) in mind eliminates the need to spend valuable resources that you would have to spend fixing roadblocks.
In other words, UX in fintech is a significant and valuable investment that can save you money in the long term and help contribute to growing profits.
Disadvantages of Fintech
Fintech applications and platforms also come with their fair share of disadvantages, dangers, and concerns. Take, for example, privacy breaches.
In 2017, for example, Paypal, had a breach that potentially compromised at least 1.6 million customers’ personal information (including their personal banking information).3
Fintech applications sometimes accidentally result in financial exclusion, too. For example, to have and use a fintech application, you must usually own a smart device and have access to wifi or internet data. However, citizens of many poor countries are unable to access these types of luxuries.
Last, there is also an overall lack of knowledge when it comes to using these platforms, and each fintech application or platform may present a new learning curve for their customers. However, if designed intentionally, fintech applications (even novel ones) can help cultivate intuitive user experiences for their customers.
Once again, when designing for a fintech application or program, it’s integral to factor in enough elements that make your consumers feel secure with the platform they’re using. For example, you may wish to add a copy that reiterates that your consumers’ personal information is secure and protected through your program or application.
5 Apps in the Fintech World Designed 100% for Customers
Bizum is a fintech app designed to help users easily and quickly send and receive money. Bizum has a variety of automated features that make the lives of users much easier, including the ability to use Siri (or your phone’s voice assistant) to send money to your friends. Bizum also provides an easy-to-use and efficient interface for customers to smoothly complete their desired actions.
Splitwise is a fintech application that solves various problems for users, such as users’ need to use a calculator to split bills with their friends. Splitwise helps users not only track their expenses without having to use a calculator or do a lot of manual work, but it also helps users prevent forgetting about certain shared expenses. Through Splitwise’s highly accessible interface, users can easily add, track, and customize their bills in the app.
Revolut sports a sleek and modern aesthetic. The minimalist, no-frills design of this application helps build customer trust in Revolut’s brand. Revolut also automates and minimizes the challenge of downloading their application, opting to send users a text link that takes them directly to their app store. Last, Revolut is extremely transparent about their membership fees, clearly differentiating between the features offered on their free application vs. the paid version of their application.
Payflow is a Spanish-based fintech application that instills trust in its users through its UX/UI design. By using calming colors, such as blue, this revolutionary fintech application fosters a sense of security in its users.
Many of Payflow’s designs also include three-dimensional features, easy-to-understand symbols, and witty copywriting.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Fintech
FAQ: What does Fintech stand for?
“Fintech” is a portmanteau combining the term “financial services” with the word “technology”.
FAQ: What are Fintech Accounts?
Fintech bank accounts, or neobank accounts, are a type of banking account offered exclusively through mobile, or fintech, banking. They often accentuate online banking through eye-catching features such as low-cost credit or cash-back rewards.4
FAQ: How is Fintech disrupting traditional banking?
Fintech injects solutions into the banking market that otherwise have never existed in such multitudes. Unlike traditional banks, fintech companies are able to address multiple needs of customers at once without the fragmentation of separate digitization. While many banks tend to digitize their mobile products separately, often leading to broken and fragmented customer experiences. On the other hand, fintech applications tend to create ecosystems that connect each stage of the user process.
Fintech companies press their fingers on the pulse of customers’ needs and are able to adapt faster than many traditional banking systems due to ever-evolving artificial intelligence tools. Fintech also tends to provide banking services to those who may not have access to traditional banks due to a lack of government support, increasing financial inclusion in the digital world.
FAQ: What is the Fintech user like that eludes traditional banking?
Fintech products focused on banking sometimes elude and compete with traditional banking. The fintech user that eludes traditional banking likely wants certain features, as well as types of ease and automation, that traditional banking cannot provide for its customers.
FAQ: Why should you optimize the financial user experience?
Prioritizing and optimizing your financial user experience can directly result in the growth of your fintech company -- and your profits. Working to optimize the financial user experience will also help you better understand your target customer and make more intentional and wise business decisions.
FAQ: What is UX in Fintech?
Design directly influences the success of many fintech applications. Someone looking to optimize UX design for a fintech application may focus on instilling trust in the target user through targeted and intentional interface design. Designers in fintech likely conduct a plethora of market research to create targeted user personas and may focus on cultivating certain emotions as much as they focus on information.
WANDR’s UX design agency can help you elevate your fintech design efforts and scale your fintech company. Specializing in fintech UX design, WANDR serves as a confluence for all fintech solutions.