Most banks today started their digital transformation journeys by migrating customers to digital, rightsizing their branch networks and investing in new capabilities. However, many of these banks have yet to realize the full benefits of these transformations. These banks need to offer customers unique, convenient experiences tailored to today’s fast-moving, digital lifestyles. Banks can do this by investing in technology that lets the branch bridge the physical and digital worlds—creating a seamless and integrated “phygital” experience.

Phygital, or omni-channel, experiences are critical to a bank’s success. Our research finds that, on average, omni-channel customers generate twice as much revenue, achieve 30 percent more cross-selling and experience one third as much churn as branch-only customers. Serving these omni-channel customers through a phygital experience should be a key component of banks’ distribution strategy.

For banks, creating a truly phygital experience means building a connected customer and employee experience that brings physical and digital channels together. Rather than invest in shiny objects” or point solutions, banks should focus on technologies that can achieve the following goals:

  • Enhanced customer experience: Capabilities such as in-branch video and staff tablets will empower branch staff to provide an omni-channel experience for customers. Moreover, branches can create self-service phygital experiences by linking ATMs, staff devices and digital/mobile apps together in a seamless customer journey.
  • Enhanced employee experience: An omni-channel CRM system can provide branch staff with single-click access to a customer’s transaction history. With that knowledge, branch staff can better understand the next best opportunity to sell and provide more personalized and high quality customer support. Additionally, improved front end systems and consistent cross-channel knowledge management tools help employees quickly access needed information.
  • Increased efficiencies and cost savings: Front-office digitization and automation (through robotics), as well as new platforms that support faster account opening and servicing, decrease processing times and save on FTE cost—both in the front and back office. Where a customer previously needed to wait several days or go to the branch, service can now be instantaneous and remote. On the back end, technologies that reduce paper help save on material cost and improve accuracy.

Bringing these investments to life is a crucial step to drive digital adoption and build a seamless phygital experience. Banks can further a successful digital transformation by ensuring every employee understands the value of the new customer experience, as well as the interaction the technology is supposed to enable.

Through a phygital transformation, banks can lower costs by reducing real estate expenses and more efficiently leveraging their employees. Further, investing in phygital helps banks optimize their distribution networks, reduce cost-to-serve, increase revenue and improve customer engagement.

Ultimately, phygital is critical to banks’ success as they fight to remain relevant in our rapidly changing industry.

Visit our Accenture Distribution & Marketing for Financial Services page to learn more about our offerings and latest thinking.


Contributors to this post: Chantal Garcia Fischer; Jill Ni 

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