When it comes to banking experiences, you have two options. First, you could get in the car, catch a bus, or walk to your nearest bank branch to get your errands done. Second, you could stay right where you are and open up a banking app on your phone.
Mobile banking is an increasingly popular way to bank, but is it right for everyone? If you’re on the fence, consider these pros and cons to mobile banking.
Pros of Mobile Banking:
There are many advantages to mobile banking, but they all boil down to one concept: convenience. Mobile banking puts the power in your pocket, allowing you to bank when you want, where you want, and with the ease of a few taps and swipes.
Bank branches aren’t known for their accommodating hours. If you work full-time, you might find it difficult to find a time you can visit a bank while it’s open. With mobile banking, schedules go out the window. You have all of the banking tools on your phone — you can transfer funds, apply for a loan, get a cash advance, or invest money any time of the day or night through MoneyLion’s app.
With regular app updates, mobile banking institutions ensure that customers are using the best technology available to do their banking. For someone accustomed to dealing directly with a bank teller, it may seem like mobile banking lacks the security of a face-to-face transaction. While that inclination is understandable, it isn’t necessarily true, especially if you avoid public wifi (i.e., use a secure connection) and stick to using established banking apps such as MoneyLion’s, which is trusted by over 6 million users.
Mobile banking uses the latest technology, including top-of-the-line encryption, that keeps your data secure and expedites the banking process. Once your money lands in your mobile banking account, it’s just as safe as it would be with any other institution, as long your account is insured. For example, MoneyLion accounts come with FDIC insurance, which is the same insurance you’ll get with every major U.S. bank. FDIC insurance guarantees your money up to $250,000 per account. No matter what happens, your money will be there for you when you need it.
Many of us are all too familiar with how expensive rent can get. Every bank branch you see comes with overhead costs like rent and employee wages that are directly passed onto customers, often in the form of high fees. By radically reducing operational expenses, mobile banking companies can pass the savings to their customers, who will benefit from much fewer fees than they’ll encounter at brick-and-mortar competitors. If saving money is one of your primary goals, mobile banking institutions are by far the best place to put your money.
Payday is great, but how much better would it be if you didn’t have to take the extra trip from your job to the bank? Mobile banking eliminates all the inconveniences that used to accompany paper check deposits. Whether it’s a paycheck or a birthday check from grandma, all you need to do is take out your phone, snap a pic, and the money will be on its way to your bank account.
Most physical bank branches have an ATM that customers can use, but what if you don’t live near a bank branch? What if you’d rather use the ATM at the corner store down the street? If you bank with a traditional institution, you’ll likely pay a hefty fee for using an ATM anywhere other than a bank branch.
Mobile banking institutions, on the other hand, maintain partnerships with wide ATM networks. MoneyLion, for instance, partners with Allpoint to offer fee-free access to more than 55,000 ATMs. That’s more than Chase, Wells Fargo, and Bank of American combined. These Allpoint ATMs are often located in convenient locations, such as CVS, Costco, and Target stores.
Virtual Debit Cards
You may think that mobile banking slows down processes like getting a new debit card. It’s true that debit cards have to be mailed out, since there aren’t physical bank branches that can print them for you on the spot, but that overlooks today’s digital landscape. As with physical bank branches, physical debit cards are getting phased out in favor of virtual debit cards.
These cards link with your smartphone, allowing you to complete transactions with a simple tap at checkout, online, or in apps. As soon as you get a RoarMoney account, you can activate your virtual debit card and use it or add it to your mobile wallet in seconds — much faster than how long it would take for a traditional bank branch to print out a new card for you. MoneyLion also sends you a traditional Mastercard debit card in the mail, so you get the best of both worlds.
Cons of Mobile Banking
While most customers will find that the advantages of mobile banking outweigh the downsides, some people are better suited for in-person banking.
No Physical Locations
For most people, saving on a trip to the local bank branch is a pro, not a con. However, for an increasingly small slice of banking customers, the satisfaction of in-person transactions outweighs the convenience of mobile banking. This is especially true for people who struggle to adapt to new technology. If you are easily confused by new apps and prefer to hand your money directly to another person, mobile banking might not be for you.
Get Started With Mobile Banking
If you’ve weighed the pros and cons and decided that mobile banking is the best option for you, you can get started today. Opening an account with MoneyLion is simple, and the process takes just moments to complete.
There’s no credit check involved, and every American aged 18 or older should qualiy. Just provide some basic personal information, including your birthday, a physical address, and a Social Security number. Once your identity is confirmed, you’re all set up and ready for mobile banking!