Winning the Underbanked: How Banks Can Get an Omnichannel Upper Hand

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22 April 2014


By leveraging existing multichannel infrastructures and new, turnkey solutions for immediate good funds, banks can win back customers forced to use nonbanks to meet basic financial needs.

As retail banks look for new revenue opportunities, providing services customers currently go elsewhere for deserves serious consideration. Both check cashing and general purpose reloadable (GPR) prepaid offerings are revenue-enhancing in their own right and provide all-important branch foot-traffic for cross-sell and up-sell, while also leveraging the omnichannel infrastructures banks have already invested in.

In the report Winning the Underbanked: How Banks Can Get an Omnichannel Upper Hand, Celent demonstrates the key gaps in the delivery models of alternative financial services (AFS) providers and prepaid card program managers and how banks can easily get an upper hand. Simple check cashing, still in high demand, is the first step banks should consider.

“Banks are leaving money on the table,” says Bob Meara, Senior Analyst and author of the report. “Their own customers are using nonbanks for check cashing services and prepaid cards simply because they don’t offer those services. But, doing so has become fairly easy with modern off-the-shelf solutions.”

This report begins with an overview of the opportunity for offering immediate good funds products to consumers and small businesses along with a primer on the competition for those services — primarily AFS providers and prepaid program managers. A case study of Regions Bank follows. Finally, the report looks at the vendor landscape for decision analytics platforms and turnkey solutions for immediate good funds in the branch, ATM, and mobile device.