The 2019 Financial Services and Insurance Digital Trends Report: CX Becomes the Currency of Differentiation

by Michael Plimsoll

posted on 09-23-2019

In the financial services and insurance industry, where products can be identical, differentiation through excellent customer experience (CX) is now vital for success. However, delivering exceptional customer experiences and faster speed to market is also dependent on having the talent, processes, and culture in place to help.

In partnership with Econsultancy, we surveyed nearly 500 financial services leaders to analyze digital trends in customer experience for financial services and insurance. CX emerged as the main focus, with innovation a primary means for delivering the seamless interactions and transformative services consumers have come to expect.

Here’s a snapshot of the findings:

1. There’s still work to do when it comes to the customer experience.

For their part, financial services companies are embracing data and technology to innovate their service offerings and to strengthen their connections with customers and prospects, but they still have work to do. We found that 48% of financial services companies admit their customer experience is not where they’d like it to be.

Looking ahead, 56% say they will prioritize the better use of data for audience segmentation and targeting. There is also significant interest in delivering personalized experiences in real time, with 34% seeing it as one of their most exciting prospects for the next three years.

2. Better service, innovation, and quality will help establish differentiation.

When it comes to how they will set themselves apart, nearly half (49%) are focusing on customer service, product innovation, and quality. Collectively, 97% say they will focus on building offerings that better meet customer needs as a way to differentiate themselves.

The customer service aspect of CX is believed to be a crux for successful retail banking, where the digital-powered fintech revolution has again been having a strong influence. One-fifth (21%) of retail banking respondents say competing on customer service capability over the coming five years is a chief focus. Meanwhile, an increased focus on product development is particularly noticeable in the insurance sector. Nearly half (46%) of insurance respondents see the innovation, quality, or design of their products and services as a key competitive battleground for the coming five years.

3. AI and chatbot adoption is ahead of the curve.

As they look toward innovation, financial services companies are ahead of the curve in adopting artificial intelligence (AI) and chatbots to serve customers. According to the 2019 Adobe Digital Trends Report, 34% of financial services brands use AI and/or bots to drive their campaigns and experiences, compared with just 22% of respondents in other sectors. An additional 37% of financial services organizations are planning to invest in the technology over the next year.

The high volume of transactions in financial services as well as unprecedented digital disruption, especially from newcomers to the sector, make the industry fertile ground for AI adoption. In a market where products can be homogenous, we will increasingly see financial services brands use AI to differentiate their customer experiences through greater personalization, automation, and service innovation.

Download the complete report to view more detailed findings as well as to discover six key recommendations for how to optimize your digital strategy to deliver the best customer experience.

Topics: Trends & Research