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Repurposing the branch

An abandoned machine shop becomes a brew pub. An old train station gets a second life as an Internet café. Shipping containers are converted into cozy tiny houses and stacked to create eye-catching office buildings. Call it creative repurposing. Call it adaptive reuse. Call it recognizing consumers’ changing preferences and responding with engaging solutions. In the same Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:15-05:00January 22nd, 2016|Comments Off on Repurposing the branch

Six core competencies for a new retail bank

With the onset of competitors seeking to carve out market share in virtually every line of business within retail banking, traditional banks need to consider both long-term strategies and short-term adaptations. For a long-term strategy, we suggest that banks transform how the customer thinks about a retail bank. Such institutions must focus on a broad range of Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:15-05:00January 20th, 2016|Comments Off on Six core competencies for a new retail bank

Top ten trends for banks in 2016

2016 is looking to be one of the most transformative years in financial services in decades. Disruptive competitors are growing, digital and mobile continues to evolve, branches look more and more like Apple stores and interest rates have started rising. Banks will need to embrace smart innovation not only to keep up, but to truly differentiate themselves Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:15-05:00January 8th, 2016|Comments Off on Top ten trends for banks in 2016

From traditional to experiential branch

While digital transactions have taken a bite out of walk-in traffic, the brick-and-mortar branch is far from obsolete. Forward-looking financial institutions are using new technology and smart renovations to transform the traditional branch into a unique environment that differentiates their organization from the next. Rather than offering the same transactions cus­tomers can access on their tablet or Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:15-05:00December 23rd, 2015|Comments Off on From traditional to experiential branch

The no-nonsense branch of the future

The branch that once captured 100% of all transactions now only represents 10% of transactions and has been impacted by various industry trends and fads. In the 1990s, it was the imminent demise of the branch with the advent of the internet, driving many banks to set up separate online banking operations, which later had to close Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00December 14th, 2015|Comments Off on The no-nonsense branch of the future

Three steps to transforming the branch digitally

With increasing adoption of digital and mobile channels, along with changing customer preferences, branch banking is undergoing a tremendous shift towards self-service banking. The dilemma for bankers is: how can they service their customers better while they reduce their footprints both in terms of physical location and the number of touch points inside the branch? As bankers Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00December 8th, 2015|Comments Off on Three steps to transforming the branch digitally

Mobile-first banking for branch employees

The average bank branch is 25 years old, designed for a different era, and in-branch foot traffic is proving to be on a steady decline. As the channel evolves, bankers have gone through a long list of updates in order to maintain relevancy and efficiency. Ironically, it’s digital solutions that offer a universal key to a successful Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00December 7th, 2015|Comments Off on Mobile-first banking for branch employees

Five ways to make cross-sell more effective

It's common knowledge that it’s easier and cheaper to sell to existing customers than to attract new ones. However, according to studies that I conducted at two major banking institutions, many cross-sell efforts result in little or no improvement in customer profitability. There are two primary reasons for this. First, most banks do not have an effective Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00December 1st, 2015|Comments Off on Five ways to make cross-sell more effective

Improving branch effectiveness in a digitized world

The digitization of retail banking has changed consumer expectations in terms of their relationships with their bank and preferred channels for conducting banking transactions. Many consumers today primarily manage their accounts online or through their mobile device. Nearly a third of consumers report never visiting a bank branch in the last six months; 58% of those under Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00November 24th, 2015|Comments Off on Improving branch effectiveness in a digitized world

Building the sales justified branch network

Stretching back to the 1980s, a key worry with branch consolidation has been customer attrition, or the risk that accountholders will take their business elsewhere if their anchor local branch is closed or merged with another location. This concern has robbed flexibility in rationalizing and repositioning networks, given that each branch closure could potentially disturb customer relationships Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00November 20th, 2015|Comments Off on Building the sales justified branch network

Why contact centers matter in a digital age

In this age of self-service channels and tech-savvy customers, do community banks still need to be investing in contact centers and trying to keep up with the money-center banks’ 24/7 accessibility? The simple answer is, yes. Call centers play a pivotal role in today’s evolving banking landscape. However, there are four areas in which banks need to Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:16-05:00November 17th, 2015|Comments Off on Why contact centers matter in a digital age

Three steps for managing customer wait times

Customer wait time is one of the most reliable leading indicators of customer satisfaction in retail because, well, customers don’t like to wait. And if they do have to wait, they express the opposite of satisfaction. As banks reduce their branch staff levels, customer wait times are likely to increase, which is a negative influence on customer Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:17-05:00November 3rd, 2015|Comments Off on Three steps for managing customer wait times

Why banks overpay for real estate

Banks frequently overpay by 15% to 20% or more on average for real estate compared to other retailers for comparable space. Over 10 or 20 years we’re talking a lot of money! For a bank that leases seven locations of its ten-branch network, with annual rents averaging $100,000 (triple net) while the market average is $85,000, over Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:18-05:00October 6th, 2015|Comments Off on Why banks overpay for real estate

Four steps to getting branch transformation right

Perhaps the single most important threat facing the banking industry is the fundamental change in the way consumers and small businesses use branches. Routine service transactions are being displaced by online and mobile, causing branch transaction activity to decline at a 4% to 5% rate per year on average, with some banks such as SunTrust, experiencing declines Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:18-05:00September 25th, 2015|Comments Off on Four steps to getting branch transformation right

Reimagining rather than closing branches

As branch traffic continues its decline and branch costs march upwards, community bank executives are often tempted to sell or close branches. Bad idea. For the first few years, the numbers look pretty, since expenses for these now-defunct branches get wiped off the books. While deposits may roll off, they’ll do so slowly, so that the damage Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:18-05:00September 14th, 2015|Comments Off on Reimagining rather than closing branches

Five tactics for keeping branches relevant

Smartphones are increasingly recognized as a natural conduit for everyday financial transactions, such as making payments and scanning checks for deposit. Still, some financial business is not meant for the small screen – or any size screen, for that matter. Many consumers continue to value the opportunity to sit down and talk through their financial options for Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:29-05:00September 4th, 2015|Comments Off on Five tactics for keeping branches relevant

Transforming the branch for sales and lower cost

The results of our 2015 FMSI Teller Line Study are in and they support widespread perceptions about declining branch transactions and staff productivity and rising labor costs. Consider that the volume of transactions at community bank and credit union branches since 1992 has declined 45.3%, while the cost of employee salaries and benefits has soared 90.1% over Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:31-05:00July 17th, 2015|Comments Off on Transforming the branch for sales and lower cost

How to boost performance with branches

For everything from strategy formation to performance management, banks compare themselves to their peers, and the way they define their peers has often come down to answering a simple question: who’s across the street? New BAI research indicates it’s time to stop asking that question and to completely redefine what constitutes a peer. Doing so clarifies the Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:32-05:00July 10th, 2015|Comments Off on How to boost performance with branches

The omnichannel failure

A lot of folks are asking me whether I’m really saying that banks need to start all over again? Is that really feasible, Chris? How can you recommend that we tear down the house and rebuild it? Well, there are a lot of reasons I can say this, and believe it. First, we started building systems in the Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:32-05:00June 20th, 2015|Comments Off on The omnichannel failure

Strategically realigning digital and branches

Digital shopping now influences roughly 80% of the origination stream for new consumer checking relationships, yet 90% of new-to-bank checking accounts are still opened in the branch. This awkward juxtaposition has left many banks at a competitive disadvantage in the unfamiliar territory of digital marketing while also feeling hopelessly tied to expensive branch networks, where most new Read More

By |2020-05-27T18:00:32-05:00June 19th, 2015|Comments Off on Strategically realigning digital and branches