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As financial technology (fintech) changes and advances, banks are needing to change how they think about banking services. 

Cardtronics, an ATM management company, recently published a report about mobile access to cash. In the report they write about fintechs, “Although the new entrants have seen rapid growth, they are just now discovering they’ve been missing a critical piece in their offering; the ability to translate those digital finances into and out of cash. Cash remains a vital payment method for many consumers, and cash access is table stakes when it comes to selecting a primary financial services provider.”

Cash is Essential to our Society

The Cardtronics paper includes data from a survey conducted by PG Research & Advisory Services. The survey found that:

  • 12.5 to 15.0 million U.S. consumers use a non-traditional financial services provider – not a traditional bank or credit union – for their primary banking services
  • These consumers select financial accounts offering the best of both digital and physical features because consumers need to move cash in and out of their accounts
  • They need access to ATMs connected directly to their accounts using an app, no cards required
  • This feature allows consumers to use their digital accounts for more of their financial services needs and keep more money in them

When asked the question, “If you were able to use an ATM near you to put cash in or take money out of your online digital account, how would it impact your use of that service?” 31% survey respondents stated that they would use that service more often.

Access to Cash

For fintech firms with few or no physical brick and mortar locations, giving consumers access to cash through an ATM would increase usage of a fintech non-bank service. “For the 85% of survey respondents who already have an account with a non-bank fintech (PayPal, Venmo, Square Cash, etc.), there was a clear desire to use the service more often and more fully. In fact, nearly one-third of respondents said they would use such a service more often than they do today, while 14% said they would start carrying a larger balance, and one in ten would move traditional banking services to the fintech option instead. Resoundingly, consumers are willing to shift behavior and consolidate more business with non-traditional financial services providers who offer a robust physical access method in the form of advanced ATMs.”

For prospective non-bank fintech customers, 32% of survey respondents said that they would consider using non-bank services if they offered the option to have ATM access for withdrawals and deposits.

Consumers want to have a variety of options when it comes to banking needs. They like being able to make payments via credit and debit cards, mobile apps, and they want to have access to cash. Banks and fintech companies looking to increase their customer base, would be wise to partner with an Independent ATM Deployer (IAD) to make sure that customers have readily available access to cash.