The Power of Mobile: Using Self-Service Banking Apps to Increase Your Savings

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Self service Banking AppsYou may have heard that SC Telco has a new suite of mobile banking apps available for our members. We’re excited about mobile banking technology not only because of the greater convenience and enhanced security we can offer our members, but also because of self-service banking apps help to improve our members’ financial lives.

By using SC Telco’s mobile banking suite of apps, members can turn their MONEYLINK Debit Card off and on, instantly check balances, deposit checks remotely, set up fraud alerts, and easily transfer money between accounts. Here’s what that means for your monthly budget and your bottom line:

How Mobile Banking Puts the Power in Your Hands

Technology is moving every industry toward democratization of service, or self-service, and the financial industry is no exception. The amazing bonus is that mobile banking apps actually make keeping up with finances easier and less time-consuming while also enabling you to do more for yourself. Here are a few top examples:

Manage Your Day-to-Day Finances With Ease.

While a professional financial planner may be the best resource for managing your long-term financial goals, you are the expert when it comes to your daily finances. Mobile banking puts you in control like never before. You may not always be able to connect to online banking services via computer, but it’s likely you have mobile connectivity through your phone most of the time. This means that you can check balances, no matter where you are, staying on top of expenditures and making budget adjustments as necessary.

How often have you had an ‘out of sight, out of mind’ attitude toward your budget? This is very common, and it makes sense considering the time and effort it takes to balance a checkbook or track monthly expenses.  However, the ability to quickly and easily know where you stand financially can have a transformative effect on your net worth. Increased visibility into what’s happening with your finances can also make you more engaged with your budget, more likely to track expenses, and more proactive about finances in general.

Use More Financial Products.

While it doesn’t necessarily translate that using more financial products equals more overall money in your savings, there is a correlation. Studies have shown that those who adopt mobile banking use an average of 2.3 financial products from their primary financial institution as opposed to the average of 1.3 financial products that branch-only members use.

Opening separate, specialized accounts, such as a savings account for the holidays, dramatically increases your motivation to save, since you’re working toward a distinct goal. In addition, mobile banking users make more deposits and other transactions per month and are, as a whole, more involved with their finances than those who don’t use it.

Protect Your Own Identity.

Identity theft can happen, and even though you may not pay for it directly, the time and the hassle of correcting the theft can take a toll and cause a lot of stress. According to Consumer Reports, most identity theft is first discovered by the victim. That’s why it makes sense to use self-service banking tools to actively monitor your own accounts. Checking your accounts regularly protects against theft. The My Mobile Money app has fraud alerts, the ability to turn your card off if you lose it or suspect it’s been compromised, turn on location services, and set debit card spending limits.

Save More Using the ‘Snowflake’ Method.

Perhaps the most powerful benefit of self-service banking apps is the ability to save more. Many people use the ‘Snowball’ method to retire debt faster. How? Paying off their lowest debt first, then applying that payment amount to the next lowest debt while holding all other payments steady, and so on. Thus, creating a snowball rolling down a hill effect.

Financial advisors recommend adding ‘Snowflakes’ to your ‘Snowball’ in order to retire debt even faster or build your savings. Here’s how it works. Every time you save money, or choose not to spend money on something, you apply that money to your debt or add it to your savings account instead. For example, if you would normally buy a $5 latte each morning on the way into work, but you decide to bring coffee from home instead, you add that $5 ‘Snowflake’ to your savings account.

Before mobile banking, this simple financial discipline would have been tedious in practice. Let’s face it, nobody wants to go to the credit union ten times a month to deposit $100 into savings.  With mobile banking, not only are you more likely to actually transfer the money—it also starts to feel like a fun game. You get the instant gratification of transferring right away, and you can set weekly challenges for yourself.

These are just a few ways that self service apps can empower your financial life and put you in the driver’s seat when it comes to your budget. Multiple studies demonstrate that mobile banking apps make users more secure, more conscientious about their finances, and more likely to pay down debt and build savings. We think that’s something to get excited about!