NY Times carried an article last week about the new kinds of banking services that are emerging in the post recession era! Some of the new names that they mention are SmartyPig, Kasasa, PerkStreet etc.
The concept is pretty simple these are simple online checking or savings accounts with an objective to save you from the grips of mega banks. They give you higher interest rates, help you achieve your goals with some smart savings plans, no surchage fee ATMs access etc.
I am not really sure how these new concepts work as we have seen online only banks, peer-to-peer banking come and go. But, surely what I seem to take out is that :
- Customer are increasingly thinking more about savings today than spending
- They don't want to pay for services that are hidden or having surprises. The need for transparency is becoming more and more important.
- There is a need for these banking institutions to align their products to a customer's investment goals. Save-to-spend later is an interesting twist am seeing in these services or products.
- There is a need to simplify banking and some of the services to make it more accessible to many.
- It is also interesting to see community banks coming together to offer these services. The smaller banks looks like were far more closer to their customers than the bigger ones. But, clearly just transactional relationships will not be order of the day for the banking instituions.