Digital checking newbies will need extra hand-holding

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With an estimated 90% of American households receiving government stimulus checks, and many consumers still unsure of mobile deposit technology, banks should be encouraging mobile deposit and making it as easy as possible for their customers.

Many branches were forced to close temporarily, and enabling customers to securely deposit e-checks remotely will be paramount.

It’s important to remember that for many customers, this will be the first time they are using mobile banking services. So, making the process as simple and trustworthy as possible will be vital to reassure these customers.

Most banks have been helping customers transition to mobile deposit and banking – in fact the volume of mobile deposits increased roughly 15% over the past year. And we are likely to see a significant surge over the coming weeks. It will be up to banks to help their customers be comfortable with the process.

Here’s how banks can best enable and encourage mobile deposit: First, banks should highlight the convenience of mobile deposit – especially during COVID-19, emphasizing how customers can avoid risking exposure to germs.

Institutions should also provide videos showing people how to use the bank’s mobile deposit feature.

It's important to educate customers on how in-person deposits work: The teller simply takes a picture of the check, the same exact way customers can themselves at home.

Explain to customers how there’s no financial risk for them (the bank faces the only risk, albeit minimal). Provide clear visual tutorials on how to use mobile deposit.

Additionally, banks should offer auto-capture capabilities (to avoid any challenges with blurry pictures). Incentivize customers to experiment with mobile deposit first – such as by sending a small (~$5) “test check” they can only deposit through mobile deposit.

And finally, provide a 24/7 call center with customer support to help with any issues.

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Coronavirus Digital payments Checking Payment processing Financial institutions