Banks have been around for centuries. They started as establishments where the wealthy put their money for safekeeping. Later, banks branched off to become a resourceful foundation for ancient empires to develop systems to pay for goods and services, manage trades, offer loans, and collect taxes. The banking sector’s purpose, products, and services evolved through the years, and regulations improved to provide citizens with a safe space to store, manage, save, and borrow money.
Technology Hits The Banking Industry
During the 21st century, when the use of the internet and smartphones increased, the banking industry evolved to accommodate the needs of its target consumers. That’s when online banking was born.
Financial institutions turned to modern technology to create websites and mobile applications where customers could access their account information in real-time. Since its establishment, online banking has added a variety of features, products, and services that enable customers to keep their finances intact without visiting a brick-and-mortar location.
Benefits of Online Banking
How does the integration of technology into the banking industry benefit consumers? While the list is long, here are a few advantages of online banking to consider:
- Convenience – Trying to get to the bank during normal business hours is challenging. Online banking provides a platform for customers to easily access and manage their accounts no matter where they are or the time of day. You can review balances, check transactions, make a deposit, pay a bill, and even send money to others with nothing more than the internet and a mobile device.
- Better Interest Rates – Online banks tend to offer higher interest rates to customers than brick-and-mortar establishments. Consumers can open high-yield accounts and receive as much as 3.00% APY compared to the 0.1% that’s typically offered, saving them more money over time.
- Little To No Fees – With fewer overhead costs than physical banks, online institutions can pass those savings down to their customers with little to no fees. Customers don’t have to concern themselves with minimum balances, maintenance, overdraft, and transaction fees, meaning they can stretch their incomes further.
- Instant Services – No more standing in long lines or waiting weeks for applications to process. Online banks provide customers with instant access to a variety of services. You can view statements, create budgets, set savings goals, and apply for products like loans, credit cards, lines of credit, and credit builder accounts and receive a decision in minutes.
Modernize Your Banking
Now that you understand the evolution of banking and its advantages to modern-day consumers, the next step is learning how to modernize the way you bank. Below are some suggestions.
- Compare Online Banks – The first step is to shop for the most suitable online bank to accommodate your financial needs. An online search can lead you to multiple financial institutions. Select at least three to five banks and compare them based on their products and services. You should also evaluate customer reviews to ensure you’re selecting a bank that puts your needs first. Ideally, you want a bank that saves you the most money while providing you with the most opportunities to improve your financial well-being.
- Set Up Your Account – Once you’ve decided on a bank, the next step is to set up your online account. The process is simple and takes just a few minutes to complete. Then, play around on the platform to familiarize yourself with the account features and services.
- Download The App And Use – The final step to modernizing your banking is to download the mobile app to your smartphone. The app enables you to receive notifications, access your account, and complete transactions anywhere. Continue using the app and its features for improved financial wellness.
Banks have come a long way from vaults and lockboxes where the rich and wealthy held their money. These financial institutions have evolved and changed with the times to continually meet citizens’ needs worldwide. Ultimately, the integration of technology into the banking industry has afforded everyday consumers a wide range of conveniences that make managing finances and accomplishing goals much easier. If you haven’t done so already, now is the time to modernize how you bank and find an online bank that’s right for you.