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Gen Z Uses Banks Differently

Here’s how this young generation sees banking, and what this could mean for the future of big banks

Gen Z may be the first generation to never step foot inside a bank.

With mobile banking more widespread than ever, and Gen Z more comfortable with using apps than face-to-face conversation, there is little reason for them to use traditional banking methods.

This doesn’t mean that they’re not interested in saving – on the contrary.

Our research on Gen Z revealed that 21% had a bank account by the age of 10 and of this group 48% already have money or payment app on their phone. We also found that 56% of Gen Z discussed savings with their parents within the 6 months prior to the survey.

What’s Stopping Gen Z from Visiting Banks?

Clearly, Gen Z is interested in and willing to broach the banking topic. So, what’s keeping traditional banks from reaching this generation?

A recent Forbes article stated that most banks follow a traditional model that relies on high deposit levels, high transaction levels, and providing mortgages. This model has worked in the past for other generations, but will it work for Gen Z?

Banks are already at a disadvantage with Gen Z. This generation expects a streamlined experience in everything they do, so traditional complex banking services seem outdated and superfluous to them.

Banks Must Offer Superior Experiences on Mobile Apps

Nowhere is this more important than in the bank’s mobile app user experience. Banking apps are still largely focused on online bill payment and can seem clunky when compared to the apps, such as Venmo, that Gen Z uses on a daily basis.

Perhaps most crucial for banks to understand is that Gen Z grew up right in the middle of the 2008 recession. It’s no wonder this generation has a strong aversion to taking out loans after seeing the huge financial struggles Millennials are still recovering from.

What can banks do to attract and keep Gen Z customers? Rather than teaching them how to manage cash, use a checkbook, and spend with credit, they should develop in-app features that help them manage money in a streamlined way.

Gen Z may need more robust banking features in the future, but until then, banks need to meet this generation where they are before another institution wins their loyalty first.

Want to Solve Your Gen Z Challenges?

We lead national and international Gen Z, Millennial, and generational studies for our clients every day. We also keynote events around the world, helping businesses better understand their customers and workforce.

Let us know how we can help you. Send us an email or give us a call and we’ll be happy to provide a little information for you to review.

Keep the conversation going. Follow The Center on Instagram @TheGenHQ or on Twitter @GenHQ. We are passionate about sharing our latest generational discoveries!

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