accent graphic
accent graphic
Back to Blog

How Do Mobile Banking Apps Stack Up? Meeting Consumer Needs

March 25, 2024|0 min read
linkedin iconfacebook iconx iconlink icon



Our most recent consumer research found that mobile banking applications top the list of what’s most important in choosing a financial provider. In fact, nearly 1 in 4 U.S. consumers (23%) say “offers a mobile banking app” is the top factor when choosing a financial provider. But what actually makes a good mobile banking app? 

Consumer Reports recently dove deep into 10 banking apps to see which ones performed best against CR’s Fair Digital Finance Framework, a way to evaluate digital financial tools in terms of safety, privacy, transparency, user-centricity, support for financial well-being, and inclusivity. Here’s a few key takeaways from CR’s evaluation to consider: 

Help Consumers Get Better at Budgeting and Saving

Nearly every banking app that CR researchers reviewed had features including automated savings, the ability to split direct deposits into different accounts, tools to help set goals or budgets, and spending trackers. 

Consumers want — and expect — help to manage their finances. More than half of consumers agree they want their financial provider to help them better manage their finances (57%). Personal financial management (PFM) tools and insights have the potential to become a significant differentiator for the average consumer. 

Protect Personal Information — and Put Consumers in Control

According to the report, “most banking service providers tend to share more data than needed to deliver their core service, while only some banking apps offer the ability to opt out of targeted advertising.”

What’s more, a CR survey from December 2023 found 57% of people were at least somewhat concerned when told that banks may share this kind of information without letting them know. Another quarter said they didn’t even know banks did this. 

Financial providers have a responsibility — and soon a regulatory mandate — to ensure consumers own, have access to, and can control who has access to their personal financial data. And, 82% of consumers agree they own their financial data and should be able to control who has access to it

Make the Experience Accessible and Easy

A mobile banking app should be easy to use for any individual. But, the reality is that most banking apps don’t have the same level of accessibility features across the board. Language and disability should not be a barrier to using banking apps. 

Beyond accessibility — which should be standard, consumers also have less patience than ever for sub-par experiences and overly complicated processes. Minimizing the steps — or searching — required to find information or take action is essential to driving high adoption and engagement. 

Leverage Real-Time Alerts to Protect Against Fraud

The study found that some banking service providers do not explicitly commit to monitoring fraud in real time and to notifying users in the event of suspicious activity. As the risks of fraud continue to rise, banking apps can do more to support and reassure consumers. 

Consumers need a trusted partner to help protect them from fraud and other security risks. ANd, 84% of consumers agree they expect their financial provider to proactively alert them when something looks suspicious. 

accent graphic

See how embedded financial wellness tools and insights drive mobile banking success.

accent graphic
Related Blog Posts
accent graphic