Dollars and cheaper loans, better rate in fixed terms: one to one, what each bank gives you if you use Home Banking
The landing of the fintech undoubtedly revolutionized the business of the banks. While some entities demand greater regulation of the Central Bank for these companies and consider that there is unfair competition, others - for the sake of it - acknowledge that their incursion into the City was the necessary "puncture" to encourage the bank to accelerate the development of your online platforms.
Thus, tempted with concrete benefits, in recent months the number of customers who adopted digital channels has grown significantly, to the point that today more than 50% of fixed deadlines are made by these means, with peaks of up to 80% in some entities.
"The growth has been exponential", reveal in the Banco Provincia, which today has 1.72 million users in its home banking against the 862,000 in December 2015.
"The number of users doubled in just three years", say iProUP from the Buenos Aires entity.
According to Gustavo Grigera, in charge of the ICBC's home banking, payments and transfers area, "digital penetration is growing steadily and the client's commercial relationship is higher". In high-income segments, he adds, the percentage is close to 80%.
In the same vein, Milagro Medrano, manager of Institutional Relations and Customer Service of Banco Macro, highlights that "in 2018 digital users increased 30% and particularly those who use the app grew 150%". In addition, the monetary operations of these channels increased 40%.
In the BBVA Francés, which has a clear policy to promote digital banking in all the countries where it has a presence, the number of people who operate via the web or through cell phones increased 22% year-on-year to November 2018.
In the case of those who operate by Francés Móvil, the advance was 30% in those twelve months. Today, in the retail banking segment, six out of 10 users make 57% of their users make transactions through the web and 36% from their cell phone.
It is clear that this phenomenon is part of the natural evolution of the business and generates benefits from both sides of the counter. Entities reduce costs and achieve greater expansion of their portfolio without increasing their physical presence, while customers gain time, avoid travel and receive benefits.
A new link with customers
The paper of the BBVA Group "Digital transformation and competition in the financial system" clearly and concretely describes what the advance of electronic channels generates in the financial system.
"If there is something that distinguishes the most recent wave of digital transformation, is that, in addition to introducing new efficiency gains and significantly altering the relationship with customers, it generated new services and business models and reduced some of the entry barriers that made the financial sector a relatively tight market, "says the study.
"The result is a disruption underway that is transforming the competitive landscape and the structure of the financial services market," he says.
Mario López, partner and founder of Poicenot, a company that is dedicated to developing fintechs and also advises some local entities in the process of digital transformation, assures iProUP that "within a few years people will decide which bank to work with from your user experience, it will be a key variable. " And he assures that studies in the USA show that it is one of the main factors of customer retention.
Central Bank data indicate that the level of efficiency of the 10 largest entities in the financial system is 58.7%. This means that for every 100 pesos that banks earn, there is an operating expense of $ 58.70.
In the case of fintech, with a reduced structure, without physical branches and with a lower regulation of the BCRA (for reserve requirements and other requirements), it is estimated that this index is between 25% and 35%.
While it is impossible for banks to reach the level of efficiency of their new competitors, the development of digital channels is key not only to improve their relationship with the customer, but also to reduce the gap with new players as much as possible.
For this, almost all entities provide strong benefits for doing the procedures from home.
Most banks offer a more attractive rate for making deposits online.
"We have a fixed-term preferential rate, which for high income is 40% above what we offer on the blackboard through traditional channels," says Guillermo Jejcic, Itaú's Marketing Director, in dialogue with iProUP. With that impulse, 70% is already done digitally in that entity.
The HSBC, one more active in terms of its electronic strategy, grants between 1 and 1.5 percentage points more for operating the fixed terms without going to the branch, although "it depends on the moment and if there are specific actions or not to capture more deposits ", according to Carlos Cánova, manager of Digital Channels of the entity, who tells iProUP that more than 50% of placements are made by non-traditional media.
The City, the Province, the BIND, the French and the Macro, among others, also provide better rates for making fixed deadlines through the Internet or the cell phone. And the results are on sight.
In Buenos Aires bank, strictly speaking, 94% is made through electronic channels and, measured in quantities, represents 99%, as reported. In the Buenos Aires Province, meanwhile, half of the fixed terms of the portfolio is already done digitally.
In active products, the benefit of using digital channels is also economical and translates into a lower rate for taking credit.
The ICBC, for example, not only offers a lower interest rate for obtaining loans online, but also grants it immediately. "Points less than the rate in relation to other channels depends on the campaign at the moment," explains Grigera to iProUP.
In Itaú, according to Jejcic, there is an improvement of between 7 and 8 percentage points in personal loans with respect to the price of blackboard. The French also benefits these clients with lower interest than in the branches.
The Industrial Bank, for its part, has a strategy for the use of electronic media that specifically targets SMEs and entrepreneurs.
"It is a platform where you can borrow for working capital of up to 5 million pesos, at a rate below the market," says José Marcos González Pereira, responsible for electronic channels of the BIND Group.
The Macro and the HSBC, meanwhile, offer the possibility of having the loan approved with immediate accreditation. In the latter, 15% of the credits it grants are through digital channels. In the Province, 50%.
The City also has an agreement with the Riveiro appliance chain, from which one can take out a credit card on the spot with a biometric system and take advantage of discounts. In addition, they subsidize all the issuance and renewal expenses.
Buying and selling dollars
The benefits of carrying out foreign exchange operations do not follow the same standard. In some cases, the "carrot" is economic and consists of a better price, both for buying and selling. In others, comfort is sought, such as providing an extended schedule for these transactions.
In the first group are located the Credicoop, the Supervielle and the French, and the publics Nation, City, which sell the green ticket about 5 cents cheaper than in the branches and pay a better price to sell currency through digital channels, as reported by daily to the BCRA. Thus, in the City, 63% of operations are already carried out through electronic channels.
"In terms of exchange rates we use chalkboard values, but we are doing a system level development to segment it by place, by time and by channel," says Jejcic, from Itaú.
For its part, the HSBC allows the sale of foreign currencies outside bank hours by electronic means, in which it can be operated between 8 and 18.
"Although it does not have a difference in the price, the improvement is on the side of the benefit," emphasizes Cánova, who details that close to 25% of operations are already channeled digitally.
Discount and deposit of checks
With the focus on corporate clients, and more specifically on small and medium-sized companies, many of the entities advanced in the development of systems so that their customers can deposit and discount checks from their cell phones.
One of those is Itaú, which a little over a year ago launched the App "Itaú Checks AR", from which you can make deposits and discount checks just by taking a photo of the document.
"At no time do you have to present the physical check," says Jejcic, adding that the application already channels about 30% of these operations.
The City, on the other hand, from its Electronic Business Banking (BEE) offers, among other things, the service of check deposits and consult regarding the movement of documents, but not their discount of them.
Benefits for all
In addition to encouraging the use of alternative channels, entities also offer more advantages to boost the growth of other digital products.
Itaú, for example, launched the "Open your account" campaign more than a month ago, which allows opening 100% digitally from any mobile device in five minutes and with a battery of benefits.
"The main proposal is for the client to beat inflation, we pay adjusted by UVA to the average balance of the account," says Jejcic, explaining that during the first month almost half of those that are usually made from the branches were opened. that period.
In addition, for this campaign they sealed alliances with digital brands such as Mercado Libre, Cabify and Rappi to offer up to 30% discount.
"Although we target millennials, the target today is much broader, depending on the digital spirit of the person," explains Jejcic and reveals that the average age of clients who opened their accounts 100% online is close to 40 years.
"It's more for those who do not want to approach a branch and get along with digital," he sums up.
On the other hand, beyond the moment of contracting products or services, for the most common banking operations, the use of digital media is much greater. In the HSBC, for example, in monetary transactions, such as payments, transfers or downloads of summaries, more than 92% is done through digital channels.
In the Macro, 85% of these monetary operations are performed by ATMs, Internet Banking, app or call center. "Only 15% is made in the branches' boxes," says Medrano.
In the future, and with the help of technological advances, the bet is that mobile operations dethrone those carried out via the web.
"Mobile banking is clearly going to be the point of contact with the customer, it has to do with an evolution and with the incorporation of technology by people," López, from Poicenot, told iProUP.
From the HSBC, Cánova coincides with that vision. "The tendency is that in one or two years almost everything is done by cell phone, the mobile platform has been growing very fast," he says.
The battle between traditional and digital banks has just begun. The greater use of online channels in the former will reduce costs, optimize resources and improve competition.
With a stock of credits to the private sector that barely reaches 14% of the GDP, the margin to grow is abysmal and in that way there is room for all kinds of players. Those who know how to adapt to new businesses will be the winners of this contest, and it does not matter whether they are banks or fintech.