‘We’re in a constant beta state’: How Citizens Bank is adapting to the post-Covid needs of young consumers
- Citizens Bank is targeting a younger demographic of customers with its national, digital offerings.
- That means rethinking its branch network and upgrading its products and services to match the needs of the modern consumer.
Customer expectations from banks have been evolving through the pandemic. Amidst this evolution, Citizens Bank — one of the top 20 U.S. banks with total assets of over $180 billion — has been eyeing a younger demographic of consumers that it hopes to attract with a set of new products and services.
At the start of this year, Citizens announced the rebranding of its point-of-sale lending platform for merchants. Citizens Pay aims to help merchants boost sales by allowing their customers to make large purchases through fixed monthly payments without a new credit application. “We’ve signed some top merchants in point-of-sale financing by virtue of our willingness to offer something new in the space,” said Eric Schuppenhauer, executive vice president of consumer lending and national banking, at a session held during Tearsheet’s Convergence Conference 2021.
As the bank targets a younger clientele, it’s also actively working to address one of the biggest concerns among young professionals: student loan repayments. Citizens offers refinancing services by paying off students’ existing loans and replacing them with new loans that have simpler payment terms, and in some cases, lower interest rates.
The bank also plans to ramp up its home mortgages, whose demand is interlinked with that of student loans. “A key trend we’re seeing right now is that people are refinancing their student debt so they can save up and buy a home,” said Schuppenhauer. “If we can offer services that pair student loan refinancing with mortgages, we could become a one-stop shop for customers looking to achieve both purposes together.”
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