There’s no doubt that Branch Transformation continues to be a hot topic well into 2014, as many financial institutions are turning to redesigning their branches to improve the client experience. But what are some of the biggest and successful trends so far this year?
Here’s a look at the 12 most popular trends shaping branch design now and how you can use them to jumpstart your branch transformation efforts.
1. Sell 24/7 With POP
What is your current branch doing to help sell your brand 24/7 and invite more street traffic in? As branch visits decline, a growing trend is finding creative ways to increase curb appeal to attract clients into branches. More than just creating an inviting look from the street, the newest designs have exterior elements that make a branch - and brand - shine day or night.
2. Mixed-Use Branches
Wondering what to do with your current branch space that’s oversized and costly? Repurposing existing space to reduce costs and drive traffic is popping up in a big way. While not a new idea to the industry, more and more financial institutions are finding huge ROI in the strategy.
To reduce operational costs and place branches in more convenient locations, Micro-Branches are on the rise. These mini branches can provide full-service in a footprint that ranges anywhere from 60 sq. ft to 1000 sq. ft.
4. Open Design
As referenced in our article "Death of the Teller Line", the newest wave of engaging branch designs are all about eliminating teller lines with an open floor plan – all powered through Teller Cash Automation (TCA) technology.
5. Signature Item
With all the talk of banking being a commoditized industry, developing a signature item for branches is gaining traction. Think of the distinct smell of a Westin, or the orange apron at Home Depot. Financial institutions are incorporating items into branch design that help them stand out from the crowd and become memorable.
6. Digital Signage
According to several studies, people engage and look at Digital Signage 50% more than printed materials. No wonder financial institutions are heavily incorporating digital signage into new branch designs. The newest digital trends are more than just a few screens running basic content, but include touchscreens, video walls, and custom eye-catching graphics that can't help but be looked at.
7. Remote Teller Assistance
Being chained to a cash drawer or having to turn over an interested client to a different representative are disappearing. Financial Institutions are moving to Remote Teller Assistance technologies where staff become Universal Associates that can fulfill all transaction and service needs from anywhere in the branch.
8. Assisted Self-Service
Traditional transactions are going down, and this is a great opportunity to effectively migrate a costly full service transaction to one less expensive. Instead of going completely self-service, a middle ground has emerged - Assisted Self-Service. One of our clients has moved over 32% of their transactions from full to self-service – it works!
9. Expert Nearby
Video conferencing with remote banking experts offers an effective way to expand staff expertise without the added costs of staffing each individual branch.
10. Future Flex Design
To make a Branch of the Future investment go further, financial institutions are looking towards the bigger picture and demanding designs that can easily adapt, morph and accommodate to future technology down the road.
11. True Onboarding
With the explosion of online and mobile services, an emerging trend is having an area equipped with tablets, interactive devices and smartphones to onboard clients and allow them to learn and sign up for all a financial institution's added services - on the spot.
12. Design Aligned to Target Market
Cookie cutter branches are fading away. Branch of the Future trends dictate the move towards environments and experiences that are uniquely tailored to a financial institution's target market, location, and brand identity.
Working with hundreds of financial institutions this year, we keep seeing these trends continuously make their way into Branch of the Future designs.
Have more to add? Add them in the comments!
Want to see the trends discussed in the article? More than 200 Financial Institutions have started their Branch Transformation efforts at our Ideation Center - a playground for Bankers. See what it's all about here.