Jump to: Top 6 Business Banking Features
Every day we speak with community banks and credit unions looking to determine whether business banking is a viable option for them. Many don’t know where to start, how to integrate new business tools with their current technology, what sort of questions to ask a prospective provider, if extra staffing is needed to support business banking, or even who and how large their target audience is.
How do you know if your financial institution is ready to take on a new business banking solution or grow commercial banking? Maybe you’ve already investigated business banking solutions, or even implemented one, but found a lack of necessary functionality, separate platforms for retail and business, complex or clunky legacy technology, and a poor user experience.
Our advice is simple: focus on making digital banking easy and profitable for you, the financial institution and two, making it feature-rich to fit the needs and expectations of your business account holders.
To get there, and to determine if you’re ready to add this line of business, start with these questions:
- What are your strategic goals?
- Who do you plan to target with your offering? (Niche industry, size of business, geographic preference)
- What are the features businesses have expressed they want/need to have?
- What partners/vendors/integrations do you have today?
- Can you quantify the lost business if you have identified a need that has you pursuing business banking? For example: you can offer a competitive loan rate to win the loan, but cannot offer the digital banking requirements to acquire the account. How often does this happen and can you quantify this loss?
The best digital banking platform will help you and your business account holders save time by focusing on:
- Transacting with ease
- Quick and actionable insights
- Personalized experiences
The Top 6 Business Banking Features Requested by Small Businesses*
What do small to midsize businesses want from business banking? According to those surveyed, it all comes down to speed, transparency and more control…
- Instant payments (payroll or B2B) that can be sent 24/7
- Dual control for activities or transactions
- Payee advanced notification of payments
- Limit increase requests for ACH and Wire Transfers
- Digital business account opening
- Premium sub user management experience to quickly create sub users without accidentally granting incorrect permissions
*Source: Alkami’s commissioned 2023 primary market research surveyed 400 small business lending and banking decision makers in the U.S.
What might these preferences look like in a full-featured business banking solution? Let’s explore this in more detail.
Business Banking Feature Checklist
When you are designing and rolling out business banking options, how do you choose the right provider and know you are including the right features that small businesses need and want today? Here’s a checklist of features, based on recent research into small business banking preferences. If your provider does not offer these, it may be time to look elsewhere.
✓ Payments. Leverage expedited ACH payments and collections, industry-leading ACH file upload and validation, and domestic and international wires (including foreign currency). Also, deeply integrated bill pay with centralized sub user entitlements gives business users a best-in-class payments experience.
✓ Business account opening. Support business owners with mobile-first and in-branch onboarding for deposit accounts. This can also drive conversations and motivate business owners to apply for additional financial products with relevant cross-sell offers.
✓ Business administration. This gives businesses full control over tactical day-to-day management of sub user privileges and authority so you can be the strategic partner they deserve.
✓ Payment fraud protection. With hackers being more sophisticated than ever, state-of-the-art fraud protection is essential.
✓ Positive Pay. Allow business users to stop unauthorized ACH and check payments and trigger actionable alerts so account holders can authorize transactions quickly.
✓ Receivables. Allow your business users to accept funds in the way that best supports their operating model.
✓ Automated billing. The ability to originate billable transactions and manage them under one platform means zero billing errors for your financial institution.
✓ Reporting and analytics. Business reports and dashboards give users the ability to quickly generate new reports on their transaction history, ACH details and sub user activity, which translates into better insights and no more wasted time digging for answers.
It’s about partnering with the right digital business banking provider who can bring the experience and flexibility to fit your diverse business portfolio, from small business to large commercial businesses. A digital banking provider should be your guide from sales to post go-live support.