Citi faced a significant retail challenge with deposit accounts, such as checking, savings and CDs. These products were once seen as must-haves by generations of consumers. And still were with older generations. However, a tremendous number of younger, digitally-savvy consumers were entering the market every day, but were opting for other financial solutions. My team researched and developed a deep understanding of the users' attitudes, behaviors and preferences towards banking. Turns out, digitally natives were choosing convenience and experience over traditional banking products. Beyond PayPal to modern payment and money mobility solutions such as Apple Wallet, Venmo and others. Digital natives at this time were looking for the "Uber of banks," and not finding it.
A crucial component to these experiences was the ease and simplicity of usage. And while Citi had invested deeply in the customer usage experience of deposit accounts with mobile apps for major platforms and robust account management capabilities of the desktop and mobile web experiences, they had not quite connected the acquisition and onboarding experiences.
Borrowing a page from technology platforms such as Google, Facebook, Apple, and so forth, the team re-envisioned the acquisition and onboarding experience from the perspective of the user, while enabling an almost freemium approach to banking. From supporting user's needs in regard to selecting the institution to creating clear pathways to creating, funding and managing an account, the team leveraged a language interface to re-create the classic relationship of a bank creating a checking and savings account: a partner who engages through conversation based on the user's goals.
Taking a conversational design approach allowed the clients to optimize the experience for the preferred channel of customers (mobile) and engage them on their terms. The solution was also flexible in that the AI built to support the experience could be leveraged through multiple access points and interaction models.
The solution and conversation platform was also leveraged by the clients for their white label credit card management services for retail customers. The success of this interaction design has led to this becoming the standard acquisition approach for all their big box customers.
Below is an experience prototype and sample screens. Additional content and the extended case study is available.