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The Next-Gen Commercial Banking Tracker

The pandemic forced many companies, including small to mid-sized businesses (SMBs), to digitize rapidly last year. SMBs were hit particularly hard by the pandemic’s impacts but nevertheless continued to launch, grow and maintain their significant place in the world economy. Despite world events, 32% more SMBs formed in 2020 than in 2019. SMBs continue to transform their workflows to thrive in the pandemic’s wake, yet FinTechs and neobanks have taken notice and are doing their best to siphon SMB customers from legacy financial institutions (FIs).

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SMBs’ needs are shifting, and FIs that hope to keep SMB customers’ loyalty must carefully tailor products and services to meet these needs. A top priority is enabling swift-er, more transparent business-to-business (B2B) payment experiences. Midmarket firms often report struggles with receiving timely payments from corporate buyers and other industry partners, making higher visibility into cash management critical to their finance teams. A recent PYMNTS study found that 32% of United States chief financial officers are digitizing their organizations’ workflows due to the pandemic. SMBs are also raising their expectations for payment experiences, with recent PYMNTS data finding that 70% of SMBs expect their corporate purchasing experiences to be “Amazon-like.”

Banks looking to engage and retain SMB customers can gain a competitive edge by lever-aging application programming interface (API) technology, which can easily connect digital payment services to other B2B tools. Solving SMBs’ historic payment frictions while meeting their changing needs in a digital-first world should be a priority for today’s commercial FIs.

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