Why should we humanize user interfaces

ChatBots for Banks: Use and Development

The chatbot is a program that allows you to understand, learn and chat like a human and answer questions in real time. They have existed since the late 1950s, but only in recent years have they come into commercial use.

The past decade has been critical in the development of these technologies. With the help of artificial intelligence, open source tools, integration with payment providers, proprietary algorithms and much more, bots have a lot to offer. Let's look at the specific case of chatbots for banks.

Building a bank chatbot

We're sharing these tips based on what we've learned about banking chatbot solutions.

Conversational interfaces are a great way to simplify the experience

Online banking interfaces are usually very complex. Banks believe that a number of features will improve the service.

According to Chatbot Magazine, 99% of the tasks users want to do with online banking systems are checking their balance, checking the last transaction history and making a simple transfer.

History can be accessed in some banks from the main screen, but the other features can be accessed by asking a bot. And when it comes to infrequently used commands, it is easier to find them by words than to navigate through complex graphical user interfaces. For example "cancel my credit card": is it in "Cards", "Settings", "Contact Us" or elsewhere?

Customer satisfaction

Financial institutions with large numbers of digitally savvy customers are testing various approaches to proactively provide customer information based on their transaction history and digital profile. In this order they use bots to:

  • Recommend investment options based on the savings bank's assets and risk profile.
  • Providing news about the market and its impact on the portfolio.
  • Suggest ways to use credit card reward points.

Fast authentication

Banks in particular are gradually realizing the real value of Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems for customer service.

They are experimenting with chatbots, which customers can use to authenticate themselves using speech patterns from natural conversations and to complete transactions quickly.

Discoverability and shortcuts are very important to the user interface of conversations

In theory, the natural language processing engine should understand everything the user is trying to say. NLP technologies are well advanced in this regard. However, new users need to understand what they can ask of a bank bot. It is mainly recommended that a careful integration process be carried out. On the flip side, advanced users may want to use the shorter commands and shortcuts for more common tasks.

Recognizability and speed can be improved by:

  • Autocomplete: If the user enters a maximum of three letters, the system will display a list of options that match their query.
  • A menu: at any time, you can click the three-bar icon next to the input field to bring up a menu with a list of the most important commands, and the user can simply select one of them.

Processes with many options are difficult to adapt to the conversation UI

A good UI isn't just about customizing your forms with a bot asking a question for every possible form field.

There are many options in bank forms that in most cases you probably don't want to touch, but sometimes you have to, such as: B. Date, currency, address or even a title. In any case, a hybrid interface works better: conversation part, point-and-click part.

It is necessary to inform users that they are responsible

When interacting with bots, it's easy to lose the feeling of being responsible for everything. In this order, empty areas must be created when creating a bot so that users can acknowledge or cancel certain processes.

This will make them feel really responsible for the conversation. Especially when it comes to money, users need to be able to accept or cancel processes.

A pleasant personality is important

Interactions with a bank or financial institution are very serious, but that doesn't mean your bot should be lacking in personality. On the contrary, users want to interact with a friendly bot, with personality and even a sense of humor. You can even spend time with the bot's appearance.

There are other important dimensions around the humanization of the bot. If the bot reacts too quickly, it will ruin the illusion of talking to a human. If it is too slow, the robot is perceived as not being very intelligent. It is therefore also important to measure the natural interaction times.

The real strength of conversational interfaces is the proactive role of bots

What makes bots interesting is not only the fact that they can answer questions, but they can also proactively provide information. In this order, bankbots can:

  • Think about important payments.
  • Report regularly on the status of your budget.
  • Suggest how you can save money.
  • Find out about the financial products that best suit your needs.
  • Update the investment portfolio.
  • Deliver important, time-sensitive notifications.


Benefits of Using ChatBots for Banks

Global Banking is starting to use AI-based chatbots in banking applications to get the following benefits.

24/7 customer support

The internet showed that banks' customer service systems were weak. Emails (with replies that take business days) and long waiting for calls are not effective.

Bots solve these problems by providing 24/7 availability with world class service and immediate response.

Support the employees

Customers not only benefit from bots, these systems can also make life easier for bank employees.

  • Chatbots can train bank employees in the processes of learning complex banking software systems, remembering security rules, and learning company policies. They are mentors who can train employees to expedite the adjustment process.
  • New and experienced employees may need technical assistance from time to time. Chatbots can also help here by providing IT support and inquiries to employees and helping with some routine tasks.
  • A bot can guarantee the support of the HR department by answering the questions and requests that are sent to that department on a daily basis.

Personal banking services

Today's customers want to manage their accounts, order and cancel services, conduct transactions, and find out their account balance in seconds. And in that order, they want the bank to be able to handle all of that.

According to RubyGarage, customers are happier (73%) when a bot helps them with all of these processes compared to other communication channels.

Measurement of customer satisfaction

Chatbots offer many tools for measuring customer satisfaction. Aside from a regular request to rate the work of a chatbot or a general question like Was this conversation helpful?

The answers help banks improve their existing solutions.

Personalized marketing strategies

Bots collect all of the personal data they can get. With this information, generic advertising can be replaced by one tailored to the customer's profile.

This results in much more effective marketing campaigns that improve conversion rate and user engagement. The ImaginBank chatbot extension in Messenger is a great example as it offers promotions based on a user's location, preferences, and interests.

Financial guidance

Many people have no idea how to manage their finances, and they also have no one to teach them the basics.

It would be great to have a personal advisor available 24/7, and that is exactly what Bank of America has done. Their chatbot called Erica teaches users how to save money.

Automate routine tasks

Automation helps save time and complete tasks in minutes that would otherwise take hours. Some chatbots are even so smart that they can easily replace a lawyer or accountant, or at least help them with many everyday tasks.

And in that order, many bots can do really complex tasks automatically. For example, COiN from JPMorgan Chase is a program that analyzes complex contracts faster and more efficiently than humans. According to JPMorgan Chase, this system saved them nearly 400,000 man hours last year.

Ultimately, chatbots can do multiple financial tasks. You can reduce costs, improve services, attract customers, and retain customers with a company. And they not only help customers, but also employees and, in that order, the entire institution.

The outlook for bank chatbots is good. In the next five years, these AI-based systems will likely be available in every financial institution in the world without exception.