The banking and finance sector can take advantage of WhatsApp Business Solution’s (WBS) global appeal, expansive network and end to end encryption.

Digital transformation has come central to the strategy in the banking and financial sector, especially as the fintech sector is showing healthy growth. Banks have not only started embracing mobile-centric customer experiences but are also striving to improve security and have been investing in digital banking globally.

According to recent reports, WhatsApp has hit 2 billion users worldwide. From the ‘digital first’ perspective, the banking and finance sector can take advantage of WhatsApp Business Solution’s (WBS) global appeal, expansive network and end to end encryption.

A personal banking chatbot in retail banking can provide capabilities, such as checking and managing accounts, locating ATMs, applying for new services, keeping a track of day-to-day expenses and plug spending. It transforms one’s smartphone into a personal banker. These chatbots aim to reduce support costs while improving end-user satisfaction. Some of the other functionalities include spending analysis, new credit applications, inline credit scores, product clarifications, ATM locator and much more.

Digital channels, including text messages and email, can increase conversions and facilitate better engagement among customers who prefer not to talk to an agent over the phone. Many people appreciate having more time to respond to an inquiry without the time constraints of a live conversation. Minimizing such conversations could help boost conversions and CSAT scores as well.

Retail banking: It can be used for user and account registration, dual factor authentication, new service application and cheque book, call back requests, lost or stolen card reporting, EMI calculator, monthly statement and much more.

Wealth and asset management: It includes intelligent risk assessment questions, portfolio rebalancing suggestions and performance analysis as well as mutual fund and equity transactions.

Lending and financing areas: It can be utilised to provide mortgage offering that fits custom profiles and monthly loan statements and more.

In the emerging fintech sector, WhatsApp Business Solution assists with payments and transfers, client onboarding, adding/modifying/deleting payees, currency rate data and rate alerts as well as real-time financial market data.

These features make WhatsApp Business Solution the most desired app in the banking and finance industry considering the fact of how it simplifies customer journeys, especially for generation Z.

Global Compliance: Clients are increasingly demanding real-time services, self-service, and personalized engagement form banks. The true differentiator point is when the sector enables clients to manage their financial lives without hassle, however, security is always a concern. WhatsApp Business Solution is GDPR compliant (General Data Protection Regulation). Enterprises should select a vendor which provides WhatsApp Business Solution that follows a GDPR friendly policy. This means that all necessary security measures are automatically made, which applies to both Android and iOS devices. It can also be used to support PSD2 compliance policy in Europe with a 2 factor authentication. The CPaaS solution providers can enable 2 factor authentication with PIN delivery or transaction approval queries over WhatsApp Business Solution for an additional layer of security for banks.

Security: As WhatsApp Business Solution is end to end encrypted, companies can share and receive sensitive information such as payment requests, addresses, etc in their business to customer communications. There is an opt-in required to verify such business accounts. An end-user must first consent to receive messages through the WhatsApp Business Solution via a third party channel which can be a website, app, email, SMS or retail location.

Verified Branding: An official business account has the green badge that shows that this is the official company account, contact information, such as your hotline, website, phone number, and other company details. A verified profile increases trust in the channel, builds authenticity and reassures end-users to engage freely with the enterprise.

New dimension to customer support: On-hold waiting times loops and email processing times can be eliminated with the support of chatbots without putting much extra effort. The relevant initial data, such as pes of account models, information on credit card blocking, opening hours, nearest ATM, etc can be collected first and sorted. Chatbots can also offer preliminary advice on basic questions, such as balance, length of the loan, etc. In short, the first level conversations can be handled by the bot and transferred to a human employee/agent for a personal consultation or advanced, intensive consultations with leads. It saves resources and time, which eventually trims costs.

Push notifications: WhatsApp Business offers 10 different types of notifications that range from appointment reminders to invoice/finance updates to dispatch status updates, etc. The customer has to consent to receive notifications by registering on the website with their phone number and consenting to messenger services. Sending these notifications via WhatsApp Business solution is cost-effective and travel-friendly than the bank app, SMS or email.

Product Videos: As WhatsApp Business Solution is a platform that allows video content, product demonstration and informative videos, say on mutual funds instantly to educate consumers can be sent to customers requiring assistance. High resolution images for KYC, such as submitting documents for verification and identification can be submitted via WhatsApp Business Solution.

Updates using keywords: An end user can use customer service manually for checking account balance, transaction status, lost or stolen, additional info, etc, by typing the relevant keywords with a hashtag or can even use an emoji for feedback. For example type #transaction for the last 5 transactions and the details will be given.

Customer Query Turnaround time: If a customer support query is not responded within 24 hours, a template has to be sent, which will be approved by WhatsApp Business Solution. The customer will receive the answer to their query in the form of notifications. These notifications are charged to the business when received by the customer.

Multilingual service: Communication gets better when it’s done with one’s regional language, this enhances the experience of customers while using WhatsApp Business Solution. The bot takes care of the language which is used locally & its perfect way to reach out international customers.

With WhatsApp Business Solution APIs coming into play, banks will be in a position to reach out to their customers much more easily than before, especially during a pandemic, when the nationwide lockdown made it difficult to communicate physically.

Banks will be able to provide updates such as self-service information, value-added Services, and customer requests once the user triggers a request by sharing code on WhatsApp Business Solution. Within a couple of seconds, the bank will respond by sharing all the relevant info.

Banks can send real-time informational requests as a customer support service for queries such as nearest ATM locations. The banks can instantly respond by sharing relevant links and rich media such as Google Map location of the nearest ATMs.

Banks can initiate conversations with their customers by sending the latest offers, including onboarding requests for new customers, and welcome kit with promotional updates.

Published in Businessworld: Whatsapp Business Solution: A New Wave In Chat Banking