Focus articles

How you can combat elder financial abuse

How you can combat elder financial abuse

The financial exploitation of seniors is a nationwide problem, but experts say community banks are in a key position to thwart this type of fraud. They recommend banks train staff to spot red flags and report suspicious activity to authorities. By Beth Mattson-Teig Community banks are finding themselves fighting on the front lines of a […]

Why blockchain still has potential for banks

Many financial institutions are looking to blockchain, the still-novel distributed ledger technology, as a means to create more efficient and less risky solutions to today’s—and tomorrow’s—challenges. By Karen Epper Hoffman It could be said that blockchain’s affiliation with cryptocurrency is both its greatest strength and its greatest weakness. But blockchain—a digital distributed ledger platform invented […]

Are your customers ready to bank by smartwatch?

Smart wearable devices have been on the rise in recent years. While only some banking functions may translate to these tiny, albeit advanced, devices, some community banks have already made the jump to the smartwatch. By Katie Kuehner-Hebert More and more people are using smartwatches for everyday tasks while on the go, but how many […]

How your bank should handle consumer complaints

It’s important for community banks to understand and respond to customer complaints. But what should a complaint program include, and how might complaint data be an opportunity to improve your bank’s level of service? By Mary Thorson Wright The ways that community banks process complaints invites the interest of examiners, and with good reason. Complaints […]

How automated lending can make your bank more efficient

A number of fintechs provide solutions that automate a portion of the lending process. The goal? To reduce labor-intensive back-office processes. These companies claim that this greater efficiency can help community banks grow revenue and, ultimately, improve customer service on the front end. By Mary Yerkes Community banks are looking for ways to stay competitive, […]

Community banks are matching customers with bankers

As technology brings more opportunities for personalization, customer expectations are changing. Today, some community banks are enhancing their relationship banking models by letting customers choose their own personal bankers. By Katie Kuehner-Hebert These days, many people opt to bank digitally instead of going into branches. But that doesn’t mean their experience has to be impersonal. This […]

Why proper onboarding at your bank matters

Welcoming new employees into your community bank can be an important part of your hiring and staff retention strategy. Bank recruiters say onboarding programs serve as opportunities to introduce new hires to your bank’s culture and to keep them happy and engaged. By Carol Patton Within a new hire’s first 10 days, a member of […]

Can apps get customers to save?

Some community banks have partnered with fintechs specializing in ways to make saving easier for customers. Here are two community banks that are growing deposits by offering personal micro-saving services through different fintech partnerships. By William Atkinson As a growing community bank, $660 million-asset ChoiceOne Bank in Sparta, Mich., found that its primary challenge was maximizing […]

Why digital payments are exploding in popularity

In a short time, the ways customers make payments have changed alongside technology. But what are digital payments, exactly? And why is the U.S. digital payments market set for huge growth over the next few years? By Colleen Morrison By 2023, the value of the U.S. digital payments market will be an estimated $1.3 trillion. […]

The future of mobile wallets

Mobile wallet technology is becoming a staple in the payments arsenal of many community banks, both large and small. Many of these financial institutions are considering the next steps to make this payment product more secure, more useful and more appealing to a wider swath of customers. By Karen Epper Hoffman Like so many products and […]

Top