Fintech Onboarding: How to Ensure Your Users Have Success

The success of any fintech platform or payment app comes down to user adoption and retention. However, the crucial, early onboarding processes that enroll those users prove exceedingly challenging to dial in just right.

One landmark study on fintech onboarding found that users must navigate through an average of 14 screens, 29 clicks, and 16 fields—all of which take 6 minutes—in the average fintech onboarding process. Consumers encountering too much of this “friction” quickly start considering alternatives, and the user base scatters.

However, consumer trust plummets if basic user account management and more in-depth verifications like fraud detection and prevention feel too frictionless. So, let’s examine how the customer onboarding process fits into the overall user journey and walk through some strategies for optimizing for greater retention.

Understanding the fintech user journey

The Center for Leadership Studies’ primary recommendation for maintaining an effective digital onboarding program is nailing the first impression. However, supporting users throughout the customer journey with resources and guidance is also important. Onboarding is the first chance to ensure long-term customer satisfaction.

The overall customer journey in fintech apps typically looks like this:

  • Initial contact: This is when a user first encounters the software before making an account. It’s critical to make their first touchpoint welcoming.
  • Registration process: This is when the user signs up for an account, often involving customer identification for compliance and security (see below).
  • Independent navigation: This is when the user is finished signing up and can use (or ignore) app components as they wish. It’s critical to minimize friction and make everything about the app as user-friendly as possible.

Effective fintech onboarding means support throughout the onboarding journey and into users’ overall customer journeys as long-lasting fintech app users.

Elements of successful onboarding for fintech companies

So, what does effective fintech onboarding look like? First and foremost, it needs to be personalized and tailored to the desires of your users. 

For most financial institutions, that will mean collecting data on where users spend their time within the app and designing workflows to get them to those places swiftly and seamlessly.

Fintechs also need to employ clear and accessible communication, both within app interfaces and in any outreach and other channels through which customers are engaged. This includes honest communication about fraud risks and the security assurance precautions you take to keep them safe. Implement financial fraud detection and educate users about it to be as effective as possible.

Fintech onboarding strategies and best practices

Delivering on these key features requires designing carefully and prioritizing customer engagement at every stage of the journey, beginning with onboarding.

Some straightforward approaches to consider to that effect include:

  • Designing for simplicity, minimizing steps users need to take
  • Utilizing the best available technology for automating processes
  • Gamifying the experience, giving users a sense of accomplishment
  • Gathering feedback insights and addressing high-priority pain points

Approaches like these help fintechs overcome hurdles to effective client onboarding and overall retention, such as customer churn. Per Forbes, fintech abandonment rates have skyrocketed recently, with 68% of users abandoning during onboarding.

Ensuring compliance and security

Know your customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering (AML) regulations are key challenges to an intuitive onboarding process for banks and financial institutions. You need to ensure that users are who they say they are, which can introduce friction like required documentation formats and wait times while information gets verified.

The other part is balancing security, global AML regulations, and UX.

Often, things that enhance user satisfaction (i.e., remembering or not requiring a password for login) hamper efforts to keep them safe. Fortunately, cutting-edge solutions allowing automated ID recognition can streamline regulatory compliance processes and optimize security without compromising UX.

For example, technological solutions such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can automate AML and customer due diligence (CDD) processes by comparing documents against large databases of legitimate ID information.

Measuring onboarding success

Another important consideration for a successful fintech onboarding process is tracking the right metrics. For most banks, the most pertinent indicators will be:

  • Engagement, or how often users are interacting with the platform
  • Retention, or how many users remain active over extended durations
  • Conversion, or how many users are signing up and making transactions

However, other customer data points give a sense of onboarding and customer experience success. For example, financial institutions can track customer activation or the frequency with which users guide themselves through the onboarding process and other account management milestones. They can also collect and analyze feedback, monitoring how well adjustments are received.

On the more technical side, metrics for how swiftly digital identity verification happens (i.e., time from document submission to approval) can help fintechs understand how seamless their onboarding is and where users might bounce.

Leveraging Microblink for enhanced onboarding

Ultimately, an efficient onboarding process for fintech apps gets out of a customer’s way while keeping them secure. But, not every great onboarding process is an efficient one. Using cutting-edge technology like AI and ML can be the difference between retaining and losing would-be customers.Microblink’s BlinkID will help any fintech company integrate efficient, effective customer onboarding without compromising security.

To learn more about how our digital onboarding solution can help you, get in touch today!

May 30, 2024

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