Jamie Warder – executive vice president and head of digital banking at KeyCorp’s – said in a recent interview that in the future, as all banking becomes digital, cryptocurrencies are going to play large roles in how people engage with money.
Warder Is Confident in Crypto
In a recent survey that his company conducted, it was revealed that roughly 80 percent of all Americans choose to do their banking online or through other digital means. Warder believes this has something to do with the pandemic, but he also attributes it to downright convenience. He stated:
It’s important to remember that the pandemic inspired a massive surge in digital banking adoption across the country as lockdowns were imposed. Many Americans who may have been hesitant to use digital tools before were suddenly forced to sign up because the in-person experience at their local branch ceased. Our annual survey has seen the shift to digital for years now, and this year’s found that nearly one in four survey respondents had more experience with digital banking in 2021 as compared to 2020. What this shows is that the pandemic not only inspired many Americans to adopt digital banking tools, but that they have begun to integrate them into their lives. The ease of access provided by digital tools we and our banking peers offer are specifically tailored to improve accessibility and make banking a more convenient, personalized experience. For many Americans, this represents a massive improvement.
When asked how much he thinks crypto has to do with this, Warder stated:
It’s difficult to say to what extent the surge in popularity of crypto had to do with the increased digital banking usage we’ve seen. While it’s true that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum have risen in popularity among younger Americans between 18 to 35 years of age, we are still seeing lagging interest for those that are older. The appeal of a fully digital currency relates to the appeal of digital banking tools we provide, in that it allows Americans to control their assets without having to visit a physical location. Pandemic stimulus also played an impact, as the popularity of retail investing skyrocketed. All in all, while it’s fair to assume that the observable increase in digital adoption may relate in part to the rise of crypto, there are certainly other factors driving this step-change increase in digital usage.
How Far Will Digital Banking Go?
Lastly, when discussing the growing popularity of digital banking, he said:
We find that clients more and more expect their banking to be available, intuitive, and easy. Simply put, they want their digital banking to “just work,” which is why KeyBank is investing heavily in our end-to-end digital banking. That said, clients are also seeking solid advice and guidance. When we provide digital banking capabilities intertwined with access to the expertise wanted, it’s a recipe for success. We don’t expect that approach to change anytime soon.