Welcome to the world of personalization, the future of investment and trading apps
Almost 40 years ago, a young Steve Jobs envisioned the app store or at least an elementary version of it. Since then, mobile apps have taken a leading role in recreating how consumers interact with products and services worldwide. In the UAE alone, a growing number of customers prefer to engage with brands via their smart devices. It explains the 15 percent growth in overall app installations on iOS and Android devices throughout 2021, according to global attribution leader AppsFlyer.
Mobile apps also play a pivotal role in closing the gap in financial inclusion. Digital finance is one of the fastest growing and most disruptive industries globally, reinventing traditional business models of the entire financial sector. Finance apps are also highly popular among UAE consumers, with AppsFlyer reporting that finance app installations had grown in the country by a whopping 55 percent in 2021 alone.
The rise of investing and the trading app
The digital response to support financial inclusion has transitioned from finding general solutions to addressing customers’ specific needs. The insatiable desire to change an outdated and complex financial system globally has given rise to numerous digital-first platforms. These make it possible to invest in some of the world’s most recognizable brands and assets with a few taps on the smartphone.
During the COVID-19 pandemic especially, we have seen a significant increase in the demand for online investing, with more and more people trying to trade from home or on the go for the first time. As a result, trades and new account openings hit record highs.
The evolution of personalization
Today, customers see mobile trading apps as a single repository for accessing investment and trading services. There is also growing demand for tools and features that address the specific needs of an individual customer. And this means that we must look beyond a one-size-fits-all approach. Customers now look at trading and investment platforms to receive personalized news, market updates and tools, such as customized watchlists. Personalized technology is forging a new generation of users who develop unique investment plans based on personal values while ensuring convenience and transparency.
New user-friendly solutions
Young people — Gen Z in particular — are looking for easy, quick and inexpensive investment and trading platforms unfettered by barriers. This need has created an opportunity for companies to try and meet those expectations and design new, user-friendly solutions through personalized technology.
We believe that there are four key benefits to leveraging personalized technology on an all-in-one trading app.
First, simple yet powerful technology is the key to seamlessly helping customers trade faster and on the go.
Second, personalized technology has the potential to achieve true inclusivity by creating equality of opportunities and means for everyone to participate in the financial markets and not just the privileged few.
Third, buying and selling investment assets become quick and convenient, with customers easily managing their portfolios on a secure and reliable platform.
Fourth, besides trading a wide range of assets with access to regional and global markets, customers can stay abreast of the latest market news. They can also personalize the home screen to see relevant content tailored to their trading or investing needs.
A new class of investors
The simplicity of investment and trading apps is key to attracting a new class of investors from the youth demographic. That is because zero-balance, zero-commission transactions and the availability of fractional assets give younger customers the confidence to participate in the global markets cost effectively with small amounts even as they start their investment journey.
Encouraging and facilitating the development of the fintech ecosystem, including implementing simple, accessible trading solutions, is necessary for creating the right conditions for digital economies to thrive.
The public sector has clear incentives to support the digital future of finance. Aside from the sector’s direct impact through regulations, its ancillary benefits will help women traders and the youth in new and exciting ways.
• Matt Carstens is director of product experience at amana.