Marketers may think they already know a lot about the younger generations of today—the millennials and gen Z. By virtue of their age, they are often dismissed or thought of to be adventurous and aloof. However, in terms of finances, this may not be the case. A number of studies have probed into the banking preferences and needs of those in the segment of millennials and gen Z, and the findings may just surprise you. Their thoughts and attitudes about money might not be too different from their parents and grandparents, after all.
Here are just some of the typical characteristics of millennial and Gen Z bank customers today:
They Are open to and Prefer Digital Banking
Having grown up as digital pioneers and digital natives, it is true that millennials and gen Z individuals are more comfortable toward digital banking. They appreciate instant gratification and take immediate action on what they want to do. Hence, they enjoy the convenience and accessibility of opening online bank accounts, as well as doing transactions such as payments and transfers on digital channels. They are even adept at taking out loans or making investments using banking apps. This means that with a powerful banking software, banks and other financial institutions will be able to leverage this preference for digital solutions and provide the efficient mobile banking experience and personalized services that young people want.
They Are Actually Anxious about Their Finances
However open they may be to digital banking, millennials and gen Z individuals are actually very careful about managing their money. This is largely seen as a consequence of having grown up in a financially unstable world—at a time marked with global recessions and market crises. They are constantly worried about surviving financially in today’s challenging economic environment. In many ways, they may be a little different from their baby boomer parents and elders, who grew up during times of great post-war economic growth. However, like their elders, younger people value their hard-earned money and find ways to make the most of it through saving and investing.
They Want to Learn More about Financial Management
Consequently, millennials and Gen Z individuals are actually hungry for financial guidance. They are aware of the risks of online banking and as such, they study options very carefully before making a move. They seek information so that they can make informed decisions about their money—where to invest it and how to grow it. Contrary to the idea that they are uninvolved and apathetic, young customers these days are very much involved in discussions on finance and learning about the industry. They are receptive to information and actively seek it out.
They Look Online for Financial Advice
Expectedly, millennials and Gen Z individuals tend to look online for financial information and education. Apart from talking to their parents for financial smarts, they turn to social media such as YouTube and Instagram to look for potential mentors in terms of financial management. They also often check out how their peers are doing with their own lives. They enjoy learning by example and absorb a lot of tutorials, guides, tips and techniques in managing finances. Rather than just stick to intellectual knowledge, actual experience is a compelling factor for them.
They Value Trust in the Digital World
For today’s young adults, trust still matters very much, especially in terms of finances. But how do they attain this online? By looking at brands and companies that are already established in the digital sphere. For instance, they are more likely to trust digital financial services and transactions if they are offered by well-known brands like Apple, Google, Visa, and Mastercard. The leadership and supremacy of these companies in the digital world translates to trustworthiness when it comes to digital banking and financial management. They are most likely to transact with and avail themselves of digital banking services from online institutions that they are familiar with.
They Look for Tailor-Fit Solutions
Millennials and Gen Z appreciate thoughtful and personalized digital banking experiences, such as tips on how they can reach their financial goals and online tools that can help them manage their money better. They are also driven by incentives and rewards along their financial journey. They enjoy working toward financial targets and seeing their efforts bear fruit. In many ways, for today’s youth, financial management should be enjoyable and satisfying—no different from playing an exciting online game or solving a digital challenge.
These insights into the minds of millennials and Gen Z bank customers show that times may have changed in terms of technology, but some of the behavior about money and finances remain the same. The young adults of today share the same concerns about securing a more stable financial future, but they are more inclined to use modern tools such as digital banking solutions to help them achieve their financial goals better and faster. These are important opportunities for banks and financial institutions to take advantage of as they seek to evolve their business and grow their customer base in the digital age.