Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank have teamed up with proposition design consultancy Market Gravity to design and launch a pioneering new smart digital banking service – B.
London-based Market Gravity worked collaboratively with the team at Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank to develop what is believed to be the UK’s first customer-design-driven banking service, specifically for mobile and tablet devices. Launching on 3rd May, the unique B app promises to bring in new users and create long-term value for the bank and its customers with the fastest account opening process in the UK and a host of features designed to enhance customer engagement and retention.
The Banks aim for the new technology to encourage existing customers to make the transition into mobile banking and bring in new younger, and tech-savvy users from other retail banks who will be attracted by the new experience. This investment in disruptive technology represents an opportunity for the Banks to appeal to customers across the UK and increase their reach beyond its traditional heartland.
Designed and developed following customer feedback, and in collaboration with Market Gravity, the B proposition is built around an app, available for free for the first 12 months, then for £2 a month. It features intuitive smart tools to help consumers take control and manage their money much more effectively. As well as allowing users to sweep cash between current and savings accounts and make payments at the touch of a button, B will offer multiple savings pots, tagging and tracking of spending and tailored messages, and hints and tips to help customers. Plus dedicated support is always on hand either at the touch of a button on the app, through the branch network and via a free UK-based dedicated call centre. The new technology brings cost-effective, instant digital and virtual support to customers and allows them to become their own money expert on their own devices – something the bank recognises as greatly appealing to the new tech-savvy generation of banking customers.
B aims to have a broad appeal to encourage new customers looking for a convenient way to bank, remotely, on the go, 24/7. It will be matched within branches with specially designed B branded areas that will support customers in exploring the new functionality B offers.
Peter Sayburn, co-founder and CEO of Market Gravity, says: “We were delighted to work with Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank on the development and launch of the new B platform and it’s exciting to see the concept come to life. It’s great to work with such a forward-thinking team looking to bring innovation and disruption to a traditional sector.
“We are seeing the emergence of new entrants to the sector and it’s great to see an established banking organisation become a new challenger and bring their offering into the digital age. It’s important for businesses within the banking industry to stay one step ahead and transform themselves into digital banks.
“Today’s consumers want banking options that are built around the lives they lead now; convenient, easy to manage and use technology in an intelligent way to practically help them achieve the things they want in life. New technologies from apps and wearables, to Facebook messenger bots will change the way consumers bank, shop and manage their money. With new legislation, such as the Payment Services Directive 2, we expect to see even more developments in payments and finance as well as more challengers entering the marketplace. Established banks have to develop their products and services to meet the demands of the consumers of today and the future.”
The launch of B represents the first major initiative for the Banks since the company’s IPO in February this year and signals the importance of innovation in the company’s growth strategy. It forms part of the group’s wider omni-channel strategy across the business using digitisation to deliver better, sustainable services for customers.
Helen Page, Customer Experience Director at Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank, says: “We worked in collaboration with Market Gravity to devise a new banking experience for our customers and to disrupt the category. B represents a challenge to other banks and is based around an app that has been extensively tested and trialled – we know it’s what people want.
“As part of our background research, over 10,000 people told us what they wanted from a bank; to take the hassle out of money and make life a bit easier. We listened, learned and took their advice throughout the process to create B – a product designed by customers for customers.”