Bringing a better customer experience to finance apps with Bitrise

Customers expect more from their banks than the traditional brick-and-mortar banking experience. A surge in mobile fintech app usage confirms that customers expect access to banking services without the need to visit a physical bank. As reported by Amplitude, the number of daily active users of fintech apps has grown by 337% from January 2020 to October 2021. So while customers move forward with digital expectations, many banks – new and traditional – are left wondering how they can deliver the best customer experience through their apps.

In this article, we’ll go over what happens when finance companies focus on the UX of their mobile app, how to prioritize the customer experience of a finance app, and how Bitrise can help.

Focusing on customer experience goes a long way

When finance companies have the agile infrastructure required for iteration, app engagement generally increases and customers are more likely to continue using the app. In other words, the ability to continuously develop and release new functionality, not only improves app UX – but also increases app engagement and decreases customer churn.

For instance, let’s examine app ratings as an indicator of customer experience and satisfaction. While app rating is not the be-all-end-all of customer satisfaction, it can have a significant impact on user acquisition and conversion. A highly-rated, well-reviewed app can be the go-to choice for churned users who move away from apps that had less favorable reviews.

Conversely, a decrease in ratings usually results in an increase in user acquisition costs. A benchmark report from AppFollow showed that a 2-star drop in ratings results in a 50% lower conversion rate — meaning that a $250,000 user acquisition budget would need to double to $500,000 to maintain the same growth.

More agility = better customer experience for finance apps

As of January 2022, 8 out of the 10 most downloaded finance apps in the US were developed by companies that were founded around or after 2010. These apps also released new versions 40% more often and averaged a 4.8 out of 5-star rating. 

There may be a number of underlying reasons for this; these companies certainly either have a better grasp on their customers’ needs, or they are less reliant on outdated tools and infrastructure, which allows them to iterate and release faster. At the end of the day, these apps are delivering a better customer experience.

Take N26, for example – an entirely mobile-based international digital bank. N26 serves over 7 million customers in 24 markets with its mobile finance app. N26 understands digital banking, which sets N26 apart from its competition. 

‍“There is increased demand for digital banking, and with it, increased pressure to constantly be releasing updates to app stores,” says Dama Damjanovic, Principal Engineer at N26.

The N26 team improves their mobile app experience by automating processes and shortening build times with Bitrise, which opens up time for N26’s development team to expand their product offering

How to improve the customer experience of a mobile finance app

Now that we understand the importance of customer experience for digital finance apps, let’s move on to the “how” – how can finance companies improve the customer experience of their mobile banking app?

One way to improve customer experience is to automate manual app development tasks. The N26 team worked with Bitrise to implement Mobile DevOps into its development process and automate some of the manual tasks. As a result, the N26 team decreased the time they spent on testing by 80% – from 2.5 hours to a half hour. They also cut down their build times by 50% and managed to triple their release frequency, and as result, they can spend time releasing new features to their customers. All of this was possible due to Bitrise’s extensive collection of pre-built steps.

Another example of how to improve app experience comes from the Bankline Mobile team from NatWest Group, who understands the importance of customer experience using accessibility testing– especially when building a mobile banking app. The NatWest Bankline mobile team uses two major processes in their app development workflow that help them continually strengthen their app experience: conducting user trials and prioritizing accessibility.

The NatWest Bankline mobile team incorporates user feedback into their feature planning. Conducting user trials allows them to evaluate the usability of the features and to decide whether they’re ready to be launched to a wider audience. 

They also prioritize accessibility, which allows them to serve all their existing customer base better, as well as be accessible to new customers that other finance companies may be ignoring by ignoring accessibility.

Using Bitrise to increase daily app engagement

Bitrise is a cloud-based mobile CI/CD solution that helps Mobile DevOps teams eliminate the manual aspects of mobile app development with automation. Because Bitrise caters specifically to mobile teams, it has everything you need to succeed with CI/CD for mobile. 

Mobile teams integrate Bitrise with their source control systems, like Git represented in GitHub, GitHub Enterprise, GitLab, GitLab Enterprise and Bitbucket  to improve the traceability, speed, and processes throughout their development process. Bitrise can automate processes from planning, dependency management, integration and UI testing, and even app store deployment.

Using Bitrise’s Steps and Workflows, teams spend less time on manual development tasks and more time focusing on feature iteration, app functionality, and improving customer experience.

Visual UI testing with the Applitools Verified Step

Visual UI testing, or visual regression testing, is part of the testing automation process. Visual testing can increase your daily user engagement. It evaluates the visible output of an application and compares that output against the results expected by design. In other words, it helps catch “visual bugs” in the appearance of a page or screen, which are distinct from strictly functional bugs.

uses specialized AI to identify functional and visual regressions. It compares screenshots from your app with a baseline image you choose to represent the expected app appearance. This way, you get an overall picture of how accurately your app is displaying, as well as the ability to drill down to specific issues.

Snapshot testing with the Xcode Test Step for iOS

Snapshot testing is another testing practice that can be automated. Similar to Visual UI testing, it is the process of taking a snapshot of your user interface and storing it as a reference. Then, you test snapshots of the same UI using AI to compare the layout to the reference image, pixel by pixel. This is a fast and cost-efficient way to ensure that code changes won't lead to unexpected UI changes.

For example, the Xcode Test Step within the iOS workflow on Bitrise includes XCTest with snapshot testing and is used for snapshot testing automation. The Xcode Test Step compares snapshots of your codebase to your reference snapshot to ensure that the app looks the way it’s supposed to.

Accessibility testing with the Xcode Test Step for iOS

Accessibility testing ensures that an app is usable for the widest audience possible. It makes the app accessible for people with disabilities or impairments that could hinder their experience, such as color blindness, cognitive conditions, hearing disabilities, and more. 

XCUITest UI accessibility tests are also within the Xcode Test Step for iOS on Bitrise. The accessibility tests include a variety of checks, including font size, button attributes, image labels, and more.

Accessibility testing with the Virtual Device Testing for Android Step

Like using the Xcode step for iOS apps, it’s also important to test the accessibility of your Android apps. The Virtual Device Testing for Android Step evaluates the accessibility of an Android application. These checks include checking for accessibility labels on screen elements and more.

Conclusion: improve customer experience to increase app engagement

Getting your customer to download your app is one challenge. Getting your customer to continue to use your app requires a completely different approach – one that involves improvements to the way your customers use the app. 

Whether you focus on optimizing your release schedule or working on new features, don’t forget to incorporate testing automation into your CI/CD workflows to improve the overall app experience. Use a platform like Bitrise to help you with testing automation so you can run faster UI tests with a high degree of predictability and accuracy.

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