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Digital account origination

Matchi Trend Report - Digital Account Origination

Fintech Trend Brief: Digital account origination involves converting a website visitor into a paying customer who opens an account online requires a frictionless user experience.  Simplicity and intuitive guidance is mainly required to both encourage click throughs and decrease abandonment rates. The main requirement is to start and finish with a functioning account online in the shortest possible time.

This brief describes the fintech innovations that assist in converting a potential customer that has arrived at a banking website into opening an account online. Simplicity and intuitive guidance is mainly required to both encourage sign up and decrease abandonment rates.

The main requirement is to start and finish with a functioning account online in the shortest possible time. A poor mistake to make is to replicate the branch opening process to online. Combining an online process with non-digital processes is a sure way to encourage abandonment (snail mail, branch presence etc.). Also fatal is the digitisation of paper processes, e.g. asking users to scan and email documents up front without preparation

Generally, asking up to 5 questions that requires typed user input starts to become tedious for online users, leading to abandonment. On the other hand, bankers expect at least 15 questions – to account largely for compliance issues. This gap can be closed by the advent of better tools for managing online fraud which can be done at low cost almost instantly, e.g. online reviews for device reputation, address verification, predictive fraud risk analysis, authenticity of identity etc. In addition, a touch enabled, choice driven form can extend the number of questions significantly for additional information on user preferences, product choices etc.

A distinct option in online opening is whether the client is an existing customer – the process should be separately designed with pre-populated forms immediately when a customer signs in with an identifier. Abandonment increases quickly when users are asked for information the bank should already have.

For new users, the key non-negotiable elements of digital account opening that clients intuitively understand are necessary and will tolerate are:

  • Personal data collection – requires users to type in name, address and identity number at least
  • Identity verification – image capture is the shortest solution using mobile device cameras. Also using e-signature apps for specimen signatures or biometrics

Apart from these, all other requirements are largely optional and could even be submitted as required in future

However, it is the user experience that determine abandonment rates and these are addressed by good design:

  • Easy navigation – “flipboard” method, single page forms, touch options for choices
  • Clear instructions – simple language, explain process graphically
  • Easy to access help - Instructional aids (arrows, animation), extra information
  • Modular design – crucial sign up information to be done first; next part of process to be optional depending on users time, e.g. submission of utility bills; loan origination – use credit decisioning software

Clearly, the simplicity of the processes implies some very strong digital tools embedded with the account opening process, i.e. separate sets of technology integrated to become seamless. Abandonment increases if users have to switch between applications for each part of the process.

Scanning technologies

This technology allows the photographing of images, typically using a mobile phone and uploading onto a secure website. An additional feature is the extraction of data from images and populating information into online forms. Some technologies are also able to enhance original images to extract information, especially where the original images have poor clarity.

Website navigation aids

These are aids that help users through a website as a “tour guide”.


These solutions aid the sign up of clients remotely, using embedded technologies like biometrics in its own user


Verification of authentication usually had to be conducted in person at a branch – but there are other solutions

Biometric solutions

Multiple companies that operate in this space globally from several technologies (like Morpho) or single technologies. These companies provide biometric solution ranging from fingerprint technology (Apple ID) to voice biometrics (OneVault is a SA provider). Also possible are facial recognition software, Iris Scanning and video identification (like VideoDent).

Credit decisioning

These are usually established companies which are credit bureaus that can be integrated into the online account opening environment to aid quick loan origination if required. Vendors include Transunion, Experian and Zoot


Digital account origination is increasingly becoming a primary means of customer acquisition – the key to sales conversion lies in creating a process that is simple, convenient and frictionless

More on Matchi: Matchi is a global fintech innovation match-making firm, since 2013. Matchi has worked with over 100 leading banks and insurance companies (FIs) around the world, and has a database of over 2,500 fintech firms. Matchi provides both a highly curated portal of fintech solutions, as well as bespoke projects for FI clients to source targeted fintech solutions aimed at the FIs focus areas / pain points. The global Matchi team has run Innovation Challenges and Market Scans for multiple FIs around the world, in markets as diverse as Canada, Japan and India, as well as searches in other geographies.



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