Spanish banking giant Santander has launched a mobile app to help consumers navigate the individual savings account (ISA) market as it continues to demonstrate its digital credentials.
The ISA mobile app, which is available to customers and non-customers on iOS and Android, is separate from the bank’s mobile banking app and was designed and developed by the mobile innovation team at Monitise.
The app provides information and comparisons to consumers ahead of the ISA deadline on 5 April 2015, when the current UK tax year ends. It also has details of Santander’s ISA product range and allows customers to open new ISAs, upgrade existing ones and make transfers into ISAs.
The launch builds on Santander’s investment in Monitise in November 2014.
“Our new ISA app provides an additional channel of choice as we see customers increasingly managing many elements of their lives, and especially their finances, via digital and mobile. It forms part of our digital strategy and our commitment to being a bank that is simple, personal and fair,” said Michelle Kent, UK director of digital at Santander.
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Alistair Crane, president, content at Monitise, said mobile apps are important for banks to attract and retain customers.
“Mobile is a major factor in a consumer’s choice of brand, and how they feel towards them. It has the power to transform the business-to-consumer relationship,” he said.
Banks must also offer customers information services to help them make informed choices, both for regulatory reasons and to fend off competition from technology companies offering similar services. Developing standalone mobile apps quickly to meet customer demand is an area where technology companies set the standard for banks to follow.
The likes of Google are shaking up retail banking by adding services such as mortgage and insurance comparison tools, as well as payment services.