•Published: Jan 31, 2023
As of 2021, there were over 26,000 fintech startup companies globally, compared to just over 12,000 startups in 2018. The fintech market is expected to reach nearly $700 billion by 2030. In this saturated market, it can be challenging to stand out.
The features you add to your app can help, but you have to be strategic about it. Prioritize the features that will add value to your app. Add features that are "future-proof" — features that won't need a lot of updates to stay competitive in a growing market.
We've compiled five must-have fintech app features that can add value to your product while also boosting usability for the customer.
1. Multi-User Collaboration
Financial transactions require multiple parties --- for example, one person transferring funds to another person or a bank lending money to a qualified customer. There are a lot of scenarios where people need to collaborate with someone else on a financial transaction or get authorization to sign off on it. A common example is someone transferring funds to another person using a payment app like Venmo.
By enabling multi-user collaboration, two or more parties can use the same app — your app — to work through deals, tasks, and transactions instead of needing two separate apps. Both parties can work together more efficiently and effectively.
Enabling your users to send and sign contracts from your app. With DocuSign or another e-signature API, you can enable users to send and sign contracts for real estate transactions, insurance quotes, investment deals, personal loans, and much more without switching apps.
Giving advisors and investors the ability to use the same app to value a potential acquisition and approve or dismiss opportunities. Instead of advisors needing to use a separate platform to send links or PDFs for every opportunity, create a feature that allows them to share opportunities within the app. For example, you could create a community forum for advisors and investors within your app. Within the forum, they can tag each other when they see an opportunity.
Realtors and buyers working together in-app to find the right property. Realtors can instruct buyers to download their own branded fintech app, so they can collaborate on finding the best house for the right price. They can both search through the same database of properties, then share and communicate with each other as opportunities arise.
2. Biometric Authentication
Biometric technology uses a person's unique characteristics — like facial features, voice, or fingerprints — for recognition. It can be used in place of a password to log into an app or access certain functions.
Biometrics can improve security as it's harder to replicate a biometric component than it is to replicate/hack a password. This higher level of security is felt by consumers. In a Visa survey, 46% of consumers said they believe biometrics is a more secure way to access their financial information than passwords and PIN numbers.
Enabling fingerprint or facial identification for authentication. People have to either use their fingerprint or face to open your app and access their financial information. There are APIs you can use for biometric authentication, but both iOS and Android allow app developers to enable their device's in-built biometric authenticators. You can enable Touch ID and/or Face ID for iOS users and use the Biometric Authenticators for Android users.
Enabling voice recognition to access certain functions. We all know how convenient it is to say "Hey, Siri" and have her complete a task for us. With voice recognition enabled on your app, users can use their voice to access certain functions or complete a transaction. For example, users can use voice recognition to open your app or to make an internal transfer between their accounts. You can integrate with Siri, Google Assistant, or other voice recognition software.
3. Live Chat & Chatbots for Support
Add a live chat and/or a chatbot function to your app for customer support. Chat functions allow customers to get help quickly without having to wait for a response through email or phone. Customers can use chat to ask questions, keep track of their finances, get finance coaching, and send information.
Not only is it convenient for your customers, but live chat can also help boost revenue for companies that offer it. In fact, 79% of businesses said that by offering live chat, they'd seen improvements in their sales, revenue, and customer loyalty.
A virtual financial assistant. Take Bank of America's virtual financial assistant, Erica, for example. Erica answers questions about transactions, reminds customers of upcoming payments, reviews spending patterns, and more. If the Erica bot can't help the customer, it connects them to a live agent.
An insurance app that provides quotes and processes claims through chat. This can be an automated process where users fill out a form and your app gives them a quote or processes their claim based on their answers. Communication escalates to live agents only once it's necessary to talk directly to the customer.
An investment app that uses live chat and chatbots for tracking performance and getting financial advice. Clients can use the chat to get real-time information about their investment portfolio without having to call. They can make changes to their portfolio through chat and get real-time financial advice from experts.
A reliable chat function is the foundation of a great customer experience. With Stream, you can build a chat function on top of an enterprise-grade chat API for high performance and a scalable infrastructure. Read our guide on building versus buying in-app chat.
4. Cross-Platform Integrations
Cross-platform integrations allow users to connect to another app or platform for certain functions to complete a transaction or task. These integrations make financial tasks more convenient for the end user. Very few financial functions happen in a silo, and users need the flexibility of being able to work with other applications or platforms to manage their finances.
A personal lending app that allows users to check their credit. You can opt to integrate your app with Experian, Equifax, and/or TransUnion, so customers don't have to go to a credit bureau to request a credit report. Instead, they can check their credit or pull their credit report directly from your app.
Connecting to a P2P payment app. You can make it easier for users to send and receive funds by connecting to a peer-to-peer payment app. With Zelle, for example, financial institutions can connect to the Zelle network and allow users to send and receive payments that way.
A buy now, pay later platform that integrates with retailers' websites. Afterpay allows retailers to integrate their POS or online checkout systems with its platform. At checkout, customers who shop with those retailers can simply select Afterpay as their payment method to spread the cost.
5. AI for Analytics & Data Visualization
You can use AI to give users in-app access to data analysis and visualization of the market. Charts, graphs, and other data visualization tools give users the insights they need to understand their finances, so they can make better decisions about their money. With these insights, users gain more from your app than just transactional or support value.
Adding an AI component to your app can even increase its value. Artificial intelligence in the fintech market was valued at $8.4 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach a value of $113.9 billion by 2031.
Analyzing stock trends to make recommendations. Use AI to analyze current stock trends, so you can make recommendations based on the investment patterns of each user. For example, if an investor has a portfolio consisting of stocks from various industries but most have performed poorly lately, you can provide insights about future investment possibilities based on other investments they've made in the past.
Round up financial activity in your industry and create a digestible report. Create an algorithm that pulls activity from reliable sources in your industry — Finextra and Fintech Review, for example. Then round up the activity into a report or visualization every day or every week. A digestible report gives users the fintech information and insights they want in one convenient location --- your app.
Charts detailing user expense patterns. Use AI to generate charts that give users access to a visual representation of their expenses or spending habits.
If You Can't Add All of These to Your App, Prioritize the Most Impactful Ones
It's rarely possible to add every feature on your wishlist. If all of these features don't fit in your app roadmap, aim to prioritize the ones that will be most impactful to your users.
There are six primary feature prioritization methods that you can use. Each prioritization method involves ranking the features based on different factors. Factors like whether it increases revenue or contributes to a positive customer experience or how it affects your business goals. You want to use the features that have the most positive impact on each of these different factors.
To learn more about the six prioritization methods, read our guide.