The Battle for the Small Business Customer blog series.

Amazon, Uber, and other leading digital services providers have made a commitment to creating positive experiences and value for each customer—and as a result, their customer loyalty is strong. Oppositely, small companies are leaving financial institutions (FIs) or deeply considering switching because of their FIs’ inability to fully provide what they want: Banking experiences and solutions in the digital channel that not only delight but help run their businesses more effectively.

The must-haves of tech-smart small businesses

A compelling business case must be made to small businesses to choose an FI for their banking. Given wider acceptance of a variety of digital financial tools and solutions by small businesses amid the pandemic, expectations are rising for more customized digital financial services. An FI must convince these businesses it is prepared to do what is required to meet their growing list of digital banking requirements. Those FIs that fail to continuously invest in their online capabilities have less chance of retaining existing business account holders or attracting new ones. As a result, these institutions may also find themselves with a higher-than-average percentage of less valuable customers.

Be the right partner for 2021 and beyond

More businesses are looking for the FI that is a partner willing to invest in the digital channel and pay attention to the right UX (as discussed in Blog 3 of the series). Those FIs open to investing in digital banking realize small businesses today are tech-savvy and that millennial-run businesses are on the rise. At the same time, they understand the digital channel has enabled fintechs and big tech firms to compete with FIs for primary financial relationships with small businesses. The impetus to be a hands-on partner with a deeper commitment to fintech solutions is present now. An FI – even a smaller community bank or credit union – can meet small business expectations through a thoughtful, committed approach. Shifting away from a solely transactional approach and moving to a value focus should not be a cause of concern—the Aite Group has found that small businesses are willing to pay for value from their FI.

FIs can compel small business with both digital and the human touch

Technology change in itself will not exclude the human touch in working with small businesses. But the pain points felt by a small business can be alleviated with purpose-built digital solutions, along with an FI relationship that understands a small company’s needs as it grows or faces unforeseen circumstances.

A strategy to compete in the new banking era

Download our eBook, "The Battle for the Small Business Customer." This Q2 eBook goes into more detail about the factors shaping small business banking today, including the ways your FI can deliver a compelling business case to small businesses—one based on value. Find out why digital technology has unrealized potential to help better segment, target, sell, and serve small businesses and be the FI your customers continue to choose.

Download our eBook "The Battle for the Small Business Customer."