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One of the problems has been defining and understanding what a small business is. They have been defined by banks in many ways, including; asset size, number of employees, or whether they have a tax ID. Those are all viable places to start, but you need to extend beyond this and truly understand the needs of a small business. From there, you can mix the ‘ingredients’ to meld into a tempting treat that small businesses will salivate over. No, not like Pavlov’s dogs. More like kids in a candy shop.

The flavors of small businesses vary so widely, making it seem like an impossible task to build the perfect concoction. Are they tech savvy? Do they seek financial advice? How do they bank – branch, desktop, tablet, or phone – or a combination of these? How do they think – are you dealing with a Millennial brain, the ingrained habits of a Gen Xer, or a small business baby boomer? It’s more than just a vanilla vs strawberry vs chocolate dialogue.


A recipe for small business banking success

Since no business fits perfectly into any mold, you can fall back on a tried and true recipe for user experience. You’ll want a cup of equal parts:

  • Curb appeal
  • Facilitates and mentors where appropriate
  • Works for users with disabilities
  • Everything works as expected (and no guess work in finding things)
  • Finances presented in a logical manner
  • Work can get done without needing a financial degree


Adding the (digital) bacon – and other flavor enhancements

Now, to the bacon. Every digital experience should have ‘wow’ moments for the user. The above list doesn’t have to deliver a plain vanilla experience. There are UI components such as personalization, interaction animations, graphical charts, and responsive web design that can add flavor to your offerings. APIs are another instance of digital bacon. It’s where you can tie together internal and external services to create new interesting ways to deliver to your customer’s goals. It can quicken time to market for new entrees such as the new real-time payment services. The point is to go above and beyond and deliver the cherry on top of your digital banking application. It will help entice those small businesses and deliver stickiness like a delicious cinnamon bun… wrapped in bacon of course.

For further ruminations on reaching the small business market, check out our webinar: Customer eXperience – Does X Mark the Spot?

Principal Product Manager | Transaction Banking

Missy Rose brings the creative side to cash management solutions with an eye on overall strategy for Universal Online Banker, how it will play into future business financial needs of small businesses to large corporates and where the user experience should head. Missy started in product marketing evangelizing the first online cash management products in the late 90's. In her current role of product manager she has led releases, been the champion of branding and design, and led ADA and UXD efforts. Missy holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising from Syracuse University and a Masters in Art Education from Winthrop University. Missy currently lives and works outside of Charlotte North Carolina.