Desktop banking Desktop banking is preferred method. (Source: Shutterstock)

When it comes to business banking, desktop is overwhelmingly preferred compared to mobile; and almost 80% of business owners use the same financial institution for their personal and commercial needs.

Those are results in two separate studies focused on business banking.

The Austin, Texas-based Malauzai, a digital banking provider for community financial institutions, and a Finastra company, released its March 2019 Monkey Insights report that highlighted key trends in business digital including both desktop and mobile banking usage. Basis for the research is February data culled from 400-plus credit unions and banks, covering 15.3 million logins from 920,000 active internet and mobile banking users.

Key findings include:

  • Desktop is the preferred platform for business banking with 85% of logins compared to mobile’s 15%. Of the mobile logins, 60% used an iOS device and 40% Android.
  • The preferred features in business banking are the same as consumer banking, balances, transaction history and internal transfers, followed by viewing deposit images and checks, and finally remote deposit capture. However, business users spend more time than consumers viewing transaction history.
  • Remote deposit usage is gaining momentum in business digital, with approximately 7% of business users making a deposit in February.  The feature is focused on smaller businesses that are using mobile to augment traditional check capture.
  • ACH upload is king for businesses; 80% of all money movement is related to uploading an ACH file.
  • The majority of the ACH activity comes from a desktop; ACH file uploads are much more difficult from a smartphone.
  • Internal transfers for business users reached high-volume accounting for more than 10% of money movements. The average value is $20,222.93; and no surprise here, desktop dominated with 85% of the volume.

“The data confirms that the industry as a whole made great strides this past year and business banking momentum continues. This report also indicates that despite these gains, business banking lags behind other digital solutions in terms of both usage and adoption,” Allan Brown, vice president, general manager digital community markets, Malauzai, said.

He added, best in class community financial institutions that are experiencing growth in this area recognize they have to offer business owners features and capabilities providing real value, services that help businesses receive faster payments and operate more efficiently regardless of location. “It is no surprise that the majority of business banking activity currently happens on a desktop; however, as more institutions adopt a single platform, providing a more streamlined approach, we expect to see a shift to more mobile usage.”

Chicago-based BAI, a nonprofit independent organization that offers financial services industry insights, recently uncovered key challenges and opportunities related to business banking for financial services organizations during its April 4 webinar, “BAI Banking Outlook: Business Banking Insights.”

BAI researchers explained key findings from the study, which focused on understanding the wants and needs of business banking, often viewed as more challenging than consumer banking, to help industry leaders better understand what businesses truly expect from their financial services provider.

As part of the research, BAI surveyed 600 business owners with annual sales revenue $20 million or less.

Highlights included:

  • Seventy-nine percent of business owners reported using the same provider for their personal and business financial services relationships.
  • Business owners have a lower net promoter score (used to measure a firm’s customer loyalty) than consumers. Banking consumers have an already low NPS of 35, while business customers have an NPS of 24.
  • The top three reasons why a business owner would choose a new main business financial services provider are lowest fees, best rates and understanding their business needs.
  • Although the majority of business customers visited a branch to open a new account, including deposit accounts, loans and merchant services, nearly 70% of business owners would prefer to open a deposit account online, and almost 50% would prefer to open a loan online.

The top four customer experience improvements business owners would like are Improving the omnichannel experience, transforming branches for better in-person experiences with experts to help achieve financial goals, delivering tools and options to customize solutions, and providing more useful real-time content to manage day-to-day banking.

“One of the most important priorities we uncovered is that business owners expect a smooth omnichannel experience, which they are not receiving today,” Karl Dahlgren, managing director of research for BAI, said. “Businesses need their financial services provider to make their banking experience easy, so they can focus on running their business. By listening to and understanding the voice of the customer, financial services leaders can seize an opportunity to stand out amongst the competition and provide unparalleled service offerings.”