Solutions to Brick and Mortar banks

Written on 01/22/2023
Layne McDonald. Ph.D.

Top Issues with Brick-and-Mortar Banks & Solutions into the Next Decade

Long wait times: Customers often report waiting in long lines or on hold for extended periods to speak with a representative or complete a transaction. For example, "I had to wait in line for 45 minutes just to deposit a check; it was ridiculous" Simple Fix: Banks could increase the number of employees or use technology to reduce wait times. For example, they could install self-service kiosks or offer online appointment booking.

Limited hours of operation: Some brick-and-mortar banks have limited hours of operation, making it difficult for customers to access their accounts or speak with representatives outside of regular business hours. For example, "I needed to withdraw some cash on Sunday, but my bank was closed; it was very inconvenient" Simple Fix: Banks could extend their hours of operation or offer 24-hour phone or online support. For example, they could supply a 24-hour call center or online chat support.
 

Limited branch locations: Some customers may need help accessing a nearby branch location, making it challenging to conduct in-person transactions or speak with representatives face-to-face. For example, "I moved to a new city, and my bank doesn't have any branches here; it's been tough to access my account" Simple Fix: Banks could increase the number of branch locations or offer more remote banking options. For example, they could offer online or mobile banking, ATM, and remote check deposits.

Limited ATM access: Some banks may need more ATM access, making it difficult for customers to access cash or make deposits. For example, "I needed to withdraw some cash, but there were no ATMs around, and the nearest one was out of service" Simple Fix: Banks could increase the number of ATMs or offer more remote banking options, such as mobile check deposits.

Customer service: Some customers may have had negative experiences with bank representatives, such as rude or unhelpful behavior or difficulty resolving issues or getting answers to questions. For example, "I called customer service to report a fraud transaction, but the representative was very unhelpful and didn't seem to care about my problem" Simple Fix: Banks could train employees to supply better customer service or use technology like AI-powered chatbots to supply instant support.

High fees: Some customers may feel they are being charged soaring prices for account maintenance or transactions, which can be frustrating and affect their satisfaction with the bank. For example, "I was charged a $35 fee for going over my account's limit, it was a small mistake, and I felt like I was being penalized too much" Simple Fix: Banks could reduce or cut specific fees or offer fee waivers for sure customers. For example, they could offer free checking accounts or waive fees for customers who keep a certain balance.

Limited product offerings: Some brick-and-mortar banks may have few product offerings, such as not offering credit cards or investment options, which can be a deal breaker for some customers. Simple Fix: Banks could increase the number of products and services provided, such as offering credit cards or investment options.

Limited online and mobile banking options: Some customers may need help accessing their accounts or completing transactions online or through mobile banking, which can be frustrating and inconvenient. Simple Fix: Banks could improve the online and mobile banking experience by making it more user-friendly and offering more features like mobile check deposits.
 

Limited foreign language support: Some brick-and-mortar banks may not have support for languages other than English, making it difficult for non-English speaking customers to access their accounts or speak with representatives.

We will go through these nine and discuss the solutions that will differentiate a bank for the near future.