Open Banking Customer Experience Guidelines

Open banking Customer Experience Guidelines (CEG) talk about the process of making customer journeys secure and comfortable to use. According to CEG a consumer must “feel informed, secure and in control.”. Otherwise, an open banking service will have no use and consumers will abandon it. The guidelines discuss paths that consumers must take in an open banking driven application or a website. It also addresses regulatory requirements and how to adapt them to consumer insights to enhance consumer satisfaction rates.

Individuals and corporate users will utilise open banking applications and websites only if their expectations are met or exceeded. If they expect a product or service to be intuitive and informative, yet, it turns out to be challenging to navigate and understand its working principles - a consumer will leave immediately. Therefore, it is crucial to utilise a smooth interaction between the Third Service Provider (TPP) and Account Servicing Payment Service Provider (ASPSP) while ensuring a secure environment. Furthermore, a consumer using a service or product must clearly understand what their consent is for and what services they will receive after providing it.

As described in the CEG it covers “authentication and the core use cases that support market propositions”. There are four sections discussed within the guidelines. These are as follows:

  1. Authentication Methods. The methods used to authenticate a user or a TPP and may appear in any provided service or interaction.
  2. Account Information Services (AIS). Financial services or products that can be initiated by Account Information Service Providers (AISP) upon Payment Services User’s (PSU’s) consent.
  3. Payment Initiation Services (PIS). Payments or fund transactions that can be initiated by Payment Initiation Service Providers (PISPs) upon Payment Services User’s (PSU’s) consent.
  4. Card-Based Payment Instrument Issuers (CBPIIs). “Service propositions enabled by customers (PSUs) giving their consent to a CBPII to submit Confirmation of Funds (CoF) requests to an ASPSP.”.

Types of TPPs mentioned above will focus only on the nature of their business model, nevertheless, they should understand the demarcation and differences of each type to utilise them appropriately.


Open banking customer experience guidelines 1.2

According to open banking customer experience guidelines 1.2 consumers must have power over their used open banking products and services. CEG provides guidance for ASPSPs and TPPs on how to develop customer journeys to produce the best outcome and create pleasant experiences. The designed customer journey should be at least of the recommended level, yet, to reach the best results it should exceed the recommendations. As CEG specifies here are the four aspects that must be enabled for customers: “Informed decision making: Customer journeys must be intuitive and information must be easily assimilated in order to ensure informed customer decision making; Simple and easy navigation: There must be no unnecessary steps, delay or friction in the customer journey; Parity of Experience: The experience available to a PSU when authenticating a journey via a TPP should involve no more steps, delay or friction in the customer journey than the equivalent experience they have when interacting directly with their ASPSP; Familiarity and trust: The customer must only need to use the login credentials provided by the ASPSP.”.

Open banking customer experience guidelines 1.2 provide valuable components of a consumer journey. Consumers are inclined to browse through the exhibited information if it is poorly presented. Since consumers wish to reach the promised result as fast as possible they skip the reading process of terms and conditions which only leads to insufficient knowledge about the product implications. Therefore, a user journey should be developed in a way that would force consumers to pay attention. In other words, a customer journey should be with no repetitive information, straight to the point and allowing a fast transition between steps. Here are the three most helpful methods to achieve this goal:

  1. Practical messages. Normally a customer is transitioned from a TPP to the ASPSP and then back. This process should be clear and a user involved should understand what the consent is for and where they are. Redirection screens should clearly state what is going on and why. By utilising effective messaging a service provider ensures that a user is familiar with the process, consequently generating trust.
  2. Only valuable information on the screen. Text-heavy screens should be avoided at all times. The most valuable information should be kept short and clear while ensuring that there are no irrelevancies. By providing a minimal amount of information TPP ensures that a consumer will read it and comprehend it correctly.
  3. Additional helpful information. In cases where a user wishes to find out more the information would be presented at the key point of a consumer journey. It should aid with the process of using/getting the product or service. If presented at the right time, this information may lead to more conversions and revenue increase rather than service abandonment.

Open Banking Customer Experience Guidelines (CEG) also provide a list of avoidable elements in the consumer journey. Most importantly a TPP should avoid excessive information, confusing wording choices, repetition, enormous blocks of text and never-ending steps to take. If any of these occur during the consumer journey it increases the likelihood of a lost customer. Also, the use of other devices is not recommended as it lengthens the journey and creates additional difficulties for a consumer, therefore, no to password generators. Additionally, in order to shorten the number of steps huge blocks of text should be avoided, especially if there is a lot of scrolling involved.

Apart from excessive text, TPPs should ensure that the service or product is bug-free and its infrastructure is properly assessed. If a system crashes or freezes during the customer journey they will remember it and never return. Besides, a customer should know exactly what they will need to complete the journey. It causes frustration if in the middle of a process something they do not have on hand becomes requisite, like a reference number. In cases where customers knew this information beforehand, they can prepare and the levels of frustration reduce significantly. The last point to consider is the differentiation between the new and regular users. A regular user should have a shortened journey, but equally secure.

Finally, open banking customer experience guidelines 1.2 suggests combining coherent and effective consumer decision processes to ensure the best results. The content must explain to a user where they are, why, what should they do next. The CEG was created after thorough research and puts full attention to the customer needs. If applied correctly it should help with User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI) development to provide the best services and products.

The CEG is constantly improved and updated, therefore the latest version is available here.

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