Mobile Account Opening: Adjusting to a New Normal

Mercator Advisory Group’s research report, Mobile Account Opening: Adjusting to a New Normal, reviews the trends driving consumer demand for and FIs’ interest in mobile account opening (MAO) and outlines the challenges and potential solutions for enabling MAO for different financial products and customer use cases.

“Today, the mobile channel contributes a small trickle of new accounts for most banks. Within a few years, it will be a flood,” comments Alex Johnson, Director, Credit Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group.

In the analysis, author Johnson defines a periodic table of providers playing roles in the mobile banking account opening process. At the foundation of the structure is the Mobile-Optimized Interaction Layer. This function represents a distinct piece of the bank’s digital transformation, separate from the long and complex back office transformation being undertaken in many institutions.

The Mobile-Optimized Interaction Layer specifically focuses on customer engagement. The purpose is to optimize the end-customer experience, while serving as an eCommerce platform for a deposit, credit card, business banking, or loan account opening transactions. It must also serve as the platform to integrate the higher layers with functions including identity verification, compliance, and fraud prevention. The desired outcome is centered on customer acquisition and revenue generation. The key benefit of this layer is the ability to come to market fast, and implementing this specialized layer delivers revenue results in weeks or months, rather than the year required for a custom development.

Mercator identifies three providers of Mobile-Optimized Interaction solutions. Profiles of the two leaders, Avoka and Adobe, are excerpted from the report here.


Mobile-Optimized Interaction LayerMercator Logo

The first layer in a comprehensive MAO solution is the mobile interface that the end customer interacts with throughout the mobile banking account opening process. This interaction layer facilitates the initial application entry as well as all subsequent customer-facing touchpoints, including requests for additional personal information, cross-sell offer presentment, disclosures and consent, and new account onboarding. Depending on which MAO use cases a financial institution is enabling, the interaction layer might be a responsive mobile website or a native mobile app. In either case, it will need to incorporate capabilities to streamline the data entry process and capture identity data associated with the applicant and the mobile device. These capabilities include data prefill, ID scanning, and the option of saving an application and returning to it later. The interaction layer must also support the presentment of legal disclosures and product terms and capturing the applicant’s consent (potentially including a digital signature). Finally, the interaction layer should allow for marketing analytics embedded within the website or app and integrated to other channels and systems. This enables an FI to measure and optimize consumers’ interactions with their mobile interfaces (through strategies like A/B testing) and correctly attribute new leads and accounts to the marketing channels or campaigns that created them.

The following vendors provide products that support an optimized MAO interaction layer:

Adobe demoed Adobe Experience Manager (AEM) Forms at FinovateFall 2015. The enterprise product is targeted at large financial institutions and is part of Adobe’s broader Marketing Cloud solution set. The product is a responsive Web form that can be configured to support a range of mobile devices, bank products, and MAO use cases.

Avoka is a provider of digital engagement solutions for omni-channel credit card and checking account opening. The company recently participated in the Citi Mobile Challenge EMEA, where its product was awarded as “Most Innovative Customer Engagement Solution.” The company’s Transact digital business platform is a responsive HTML 5 interface that can be configured through a drag-and-drop design tool. That tool enables business users to lay out the structure and the look and feel of the account application and drop in prebuilt functions from integrated partners. These functions, which are intended to help optimize the consumer’s data entry process and the bank’s risk evaluation process, include prefill from social media websites, ID scanning for prefill and ID authentication (using Mitek and Top Image Systems), and the acquisition of bank transaction data (using Yodlee) and external risk and identity data (using Trulioo, LexisNexis Risk Solutions, and Experian). During the initial setup process for a new client, Avoka typically builds a series of XML integrations to the financial institution’s loan origination system, CRM system, and core banking system. Avoka has also built a standard integration with the Salesforce CRM ecosystem. Avoka Transact can be deployed in a private instance of the Amazon Cloud or on premise, although a majority of the company’s clients run in the cloud (a practice the company acknowledges is more common in Europe and Australia than in the United States).

The full report from Mercator is available at–Adjusting-to-a-New-Normal/

Don Bergal
Don Bergal

Don is CMO, building and leading worldwide marketing at Avoka. He has a successful 25 year record of growing technology businesses in marketing, operations, and sales management, particularly with early stage and high growth companies.

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