Banks are up against increased competition from nimble fintech start-ups as the need to adapt quickly to dramatic changes in consumer behaviour, new technology, and the fast-evolving regulatory environment continues to pose a challenge. Mobile security and authentication specialist Entersekt will hold the global launch of a new digital commerce enablement tool, Connekt, on 6 March 2018 at Seamless Africa in Cape Town.
“Connekt allows financial institutions to turn on new mobile payment services within their existing banking apps quickly and cost-effectively. This works regardless of the underlying technology, payment endpoint, or merchant network involved,” says Schalk Nolte, CEO, Entersekt.
Card networks like Visa and Mastercard have developed new technologies to both enable and protect online consumers making cashless payments. Innovations like tokenisation, app-to-app payments, 3D Secure, and mobile wallets – together with technologies like QR (scan to pay) and NFC (tap to pay) – make the number of payment options banks must consider and respond to overwhelming.
In order to keep pace, they must select which of these services to offer their customers and then integrate the technologies accordingly – no small feat considering how rapidly new payments services emerge, and how swiftly consumer expectations can change.
“Using Connekt, banks can deploy these new services simply – without having to spend a lot of time and money developing their own interfaces to cater for the disparate systems that enable these capabilities,” Nolte explains.
In this way, the burden of choice is quelled: banks no longer need to agonise over which technologies to incorporate. Connekt streamlines the process.
Right now, innovative fintech startups are growing their market share among consumers – millennials in particular.
“Bank brands are beginning to fade into the background as these technology companies present themselves directly to the customer at the point of purchase,” says Nolte.
Good examples of this phenomenon are Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, and Amazon Go.
Although card issuers and their infrastructure will remain central to the digital economy, Nolte believes that banks must position themselves at the heart of mobile-centric financial services and payments, acting as a bridge between their customers and new fintech-created services.
“By making the banking app the anchor point of their customers’ mobile payments, banks not only strengthen their position against disintermediation and improve customer retention with a wider product offering, they also draw significantly more traffic to their app daily, increasing transaction rates and revenue,” says Nolte.
According to Nolte, Connekt’s key advantage is that the bank’s mobile users will enjoy the same user experience for initiating and authenticating e-commerce transactions as for banking. There is no need for the consumer to download a profusion of mobile payments applications; they can access all the different services through a single trusted point – their branded banking app.