TOP DIGITAL BANKING PLATFORMS IN NIGERIA
As days turn to weeks, weeks turn to months and months to years; traditional Nigerian banks are losing ground in respect of creating an enabling environment in the ease of banking and other financial transactions. Some of the well-documented issues customers have with traditional banks is questionable charges and slow issues resolution. Sometimes, it is better to wait for the half Moon than hold a queue in Nigerian banking halls. The frustrating poor communication and lack of empathy in resolving issues make traditional banks seem light years behind digital banking. It just feels like the major focus of traditional Nigerian banks is maximizing profit through aggressive marketing rather than fixing issues hovering around their services.
Traditional Nigerian banks have made a lot of progress in card issuance. Some of these cards can also cover the customer while abroad. Also, many Nigerian banks are affiliated to foreign banks. Hence, it is possible to move money across the border to anywhere around the world. It is safe to mention that in the past, people had to wait for days before cards were issued to them. But customers can now pick up their debit cards almost immediately. All they have to do is visit any of their bank’s branches. Though, you still need to fill out a form but you are assured to getting your debit card on the spot.
Digital banking can be referred to as a shift from physical banking to virtual or online banking. If you can imagine banking done outside the banking halls but through internet powered apps, then, you have an idea of digital banking. With digital banks, the biggest plus has always been “freedom” and “ease”. Digital banking is a gift that keeps giving and there is a possibility it could be the first banking platform void of weaknesses or limitations. Some digital banks like Kuda, Rubies and ALAT have taken the game to a whole new level by promising and delivering customers efficient banking with no charges. There is definitely no best time for banking than now. With digital banks, application for debit cards is paperless and is handed to you just few days after applying. Digital banking has come to stay and hardly anyone would be surprised it it leaves traditional banks stuck in the past.
Digital Banking Platform Apps
There are currently a few top digital banking apps in Nigeria. Chief among them is the Mint Digital Bank App. This app returns financial power to customers and eliminates risks associated with other bank apps. Mint Digital Bank is a subsidiary of Finex Microfinance Bank. The arrival of Mint Digital Bank has caused a watershed in digital banking in Nigeria. Wema Bank, after 75 years of her existence, launched ALAT in 2017. Since then, more and more digital bank apps have been springing up. Kudimoney, an online lending and savings platform transformed to Kuda in 2018. In 2019, QuCoon, a financial technology and consulting firm introduced Rubies to the world. Eyowo was relaunched the same year – though has been operating financial services for two years before then. Before lockdown, VED Microfinance Bank announced the launch of V by VED digital banking app. Sparkle launched in the middle of this year. All these digital banking apps are giving traditional banks in Nigeria a run for their money and have taken banking to Olympian heights.
Advantages and Disadvantages of Digital Banking
Traditional banks in Nigeria have increased their online presence, but it does not paper the obvious advantages of digital banking. Below are some of the advantages of digital banking:
- Personal relationships: there is no personal relationship with digital banking. No one is responsible or is privy to your transactions. This ensures that a customer’s particulars are safe and secured.
- Flexibility: banking has never been more flexible with digital banking.
- Online Experience: digital banking offers far superior and sophisticated online banking experience.
- Unlimited Services: digital banks are yet to expend all the possible services they can render to their customers.
- Cashless Facility: with digital banking, it is almost impossible to have the security of your deposits or cash compromised. There is no need to carry money around. In digital banking, cashless policy is epitomized.
- Better Rates and Lower Fees: there are some digital banks that do not charge a dime for their services. Interest rates are quite mouthwatering and encouraging.
- There is hardly anything in life without weaknesses. Below are some of the disadvantages of digital banking:
- Limitations: with digital banking, there are well-articulated limitations on deposits.
- Security Concerns: theft is one of the major minuses of digital banking. Hackers might just gain access into your account.
- No Personal Relationship: it is easy to do business with people you can see and talk to. Digital banking eliminates physical rapport between the bank and the customers.
- Interruptions: with the epileptic electricity supply in the country, it is difficult to operate a digital bank account. Also, if the technological instrument is faulty, it is impossible to do digital banking.
Digital, Online and Internet Banking Explained
When last did you visit a bank? This question might shock many but the truth is that we are now in the era of digital banking. You do not have to go to the bank to get transactions done. All you need to do is get a digital-friendly appliance and you are good to go. However, digital banking is not online banking. These two phenomena have been discovered to have been misconstrued by many as the same. They are different by wide margins. But it is worthy of note that both (internet banking inclusive) have ensured that the era of carrying cash around or remitting cheques are now old school.
It has become normal for people to confuse digital banking with online banking, the latter focuses on digitizing the main aspects of banking. But digital banking digitizes everything connected with banking. Digital banking takes everything everything with physical banking online. Hence, anything you can perform in a banking hall is made easier and possible with digital banking. Online banking on the other hand, online banking is about logging into your online bank account. Put simply, transactions done electronically using internet gateways can be said to be online banking.
Internet banking can be used interchangeable with online banking. It is a kind of banking that is powered electronically through the internet. Any transaction done electronically that is enhanced by internet services refers to online or internet banking. Online or internet banking offers customers almost every service traditionally available through a local branch including deposits, transfers, and online bill payments
Digital Banking Products and Services in Nigeria
There are many products associated with digital banking cum services they render to their customers. In fact, the role digital banking plays in the movement of monies and other legal tenders is larger than life itself. Digital banking ensures that customers get needed funds at their convenience. Digital banking also makes cashless policy more effective. Digital banking guarantees business loans, merchant services, etc. Digital banking products.
Importance of Digital Banking
Digital banking has come to stay. It has ensured that customers do not need to wait long hours before speaking with his/her bank’s customer care operative. Digital banking is also 24/7 style of banking anywhere in the world. All you need is a device and internet connection. With digital banking, you can make deposits or withdrawals anywhere and at any time. Digital banking has therefore made life easy for customers who can now breathe some fresh air. There is an adage that interprets the fact that if you want to waste your time, just visit any of your bank branches. But digital banking has quite outstandingly buried all that in the past.
Digital banking enables APIs and other options enabling service coalitions in order to enhance delivery of financial products and services for customers through mobile platforms, ATMs and desktop enabled gadgets.
Features and Types of Digital Banking in Nigeria
The features and types of digital banking in Nigeria are as follows:
- Mobile banking
- UPIs – Unified Payment Systems
- Internet disabled phone banking
- Loyalty rewards and lifetime benefits.
- Digital wallet.
- Finance planning.
Digital Banking Trends and State of Digital Banking in Nigeria
During the COVID-19 enforcement lockdown, Nigerians were forced to rely on digital banking. People had no reason to abandon cash transactions but during the lockdown, Nigerians had no choice but to embrace digital banking through the use of ATMs, Point of Sale (PoS) machines and other e-payment channels to pay for essential commodities as bank branches were closed. This is a trend that has continued way after the total lockdown. People have now come to realize how banking can be easy with the digital banking opportunity.
Moreover, the increased demand for digital products and services have ensured that banks now have more favorable budgets towards digital banking. As more and more Nigerians discover the beauty and ease at which you can bank at a go through digital banking, banks are investing more resources in digital banking. There are strong indications this trend will continue to grow in relevance and substance.
In December 2019, Standard Chartered Bank introduced the first digital bank in Nigeria. This bank was to carry the traditional activities of physical banks to digital banking platforms. This digital bank has opened up avenues for branchless, cashless, safe and secure banking transactions. This digital bank offers customers savings account, current account, fixed deposits, etc. Hence, customers can rest easy and do their banking at their own convenience.
List of Digital Banks in Nigeria
Below are some of the digital banks in nigeria.:
- Mint Digital Bank
- V by VED
At the moment, the best digital bank in Nigeria in terms of mouthwatering interest rates, financial inclusion, charges, ease of transactions, flexible deposits, etc. is Mint Digital Bank. With interest rates of up to 15% per annum, there is no better place to keep your money safe. Scared money makes no extra cash. Thus, putting your hard-earned money where you have liberty to do anything should be enticing for anyone who craves financial stability. With Mint Digital Bank, financial power returns to you as you continuously smile to the bank. If you crave eliminating risks associated with digital banking, you should go for a digital bank that eliminates that. If you want flexibility in connection with your finances, you should embrace a digital bank that allows it. At this time, Mint Digital Bank does all that and more. This is why she is way above the pack.
The growth and evolution of digital banking in Nigeria is huge and cannot be dismissed. As the world keeps shrinking into a village, digital banking is gaining prominence. Most of the things Nigerians do are now becoming more technologically-inclined. The landscape of banking and financial services are changing. No wonder banks are now tapping into the opportunities digital banking brings to the table. There is no gainsaying that digital banking has come to stay.