Omnichannel Customer Acquisition 2.0: What It Is and How to Get There

by Bob Meara, July 7, 2016
Product Trends/ Reviews


Once exclusively the domain of the branch channel, institutions are hurrying to provide a compelling digital onboarding experience. This report looks at the state of omnichannel customer acquisition, opportunities for improvement, and the vendor landscape for solutions designed to address them.

Celent finds that omnichannel customer acquisition remains largely aspirational for most North American financial institutions.

“Most institutions remain over-reliant on the branch channel for selling. Inadequate channel systems are partly to blame,” says Bob Meara, Senior Analyst with Celent’s Banking Group and author of the report. “But, a rip and replace of these systems isn’t a viable short-term solution for most institutions.”

The good news is that a legitimately omnichannel customer acquisition solution need not be far off, even for institutions with no mobile account origination capability and aging legacy branch platform sales systems. A variety of vendor solutions stand ready to help financial institutions create what their customers increasingly expect.

The report begins with defining “omnichannel customer acquisition” and makes a case for why it matters, and will matter all the more going forward. It then details the fledgling state of omnichannel customer acquisition as measured by a March-April 2016 survey of North American financial institutions. The report then offers an analysis of common areas for improvement in banks’ customer acquisition mechanisms, along with how a variety of vendor solutions are helping institutions close their improvement gaps.

Next, a trio of case studies illustrates the significant benefits banks are realizing for their investment in technology and business process change aimed at improving customer acquisition capability. The report concludes with a discussion of available vendor solutions and recommendations for institutions considering an investment in omnichannel customer acquisition capability.

Celent is a research and advisory firm dedicated to helping financial institutions formulate comprehensive business and technology strategies. Celent publishes reports identifying trends and best practices in financial services technology and conducts consulting engagements for financial institutions looking to use technology to enhance existing business processes or launch new business strategies. With a team of internationally based analysts, Celent is uniquely positioned to offer strategic advice and market insights on a global basis. Celent is a member of the Oliver Wyman Group, which is a wholly-owned operating unit of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

Media Contacts

North America
Michele Pace
Tel: +1 212 345 1366

Europe (London)
Chris Williams
Tel: +44 (0)782 448 3336

Asia (Tokyo)
Yumi Nagaoka
Tel.: +81 3 3500 3023

Table of Contents

Executive Summary



Key Research Questions


Defining Omnichannel Customer Acquisition


Why Omnichannel Customer Acquisition Matters


The Fledgling State of Omnichannel Customer Acquisition


Opportunities for Improvement



Judging Customer Acquisition Efficacy



Realizing Opportunities with Vendor Solutions



What Banks Are Doing to Improve


What to Expect



Beyond Bank



Eastern Bank



Santander US


Omnichannel Customer Acquisition Solutions



Image Analytics



ID Verification



Comprehensive Solutions




Leveraging Celent’s Expertise



Support for Financial Institutions



Support for Vendors


Related Celent Research


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