Why is there a need for gamification in Fintech?

Findings in research show that there is a strong relationship between gamification and intent to use online banking services in Fintech. A properly designed gamification can help bank activities more exiting, interesting and enjoyable. In return, Fintech gets customer acceptance, engagement, and higher satisfaction. This extends the use of technology and includes the gamification impact. The results in research explain the customer decisions in the journey path to use banking services.

The globalization of Fintech is fulling the need to acquire a deeper understanding of the impact of gamification in acceptance within the financial industry. The evidence of the combination of gamification in the financial industry is quite new with the outcome that it ́s working. New data from South America providing new insights into how game techniques influence individual behaviour in Fintech.

The use of financial applications has in recent years increased significantly where online banking can be done almost anytime and anywhere. Most of the banking services is not fun to use and are mostly used for simple transaction services at all regarding to studies. Gamification is expected to more easily capture and sustain the interest of the younger generation, the people who are raised in games. Even though games enjoy all generations. Providing a more fun and enjoyable environment can favorably increase the perceptions toward acceptance of the application.

What is gamification in Fintech?

Online banking can be defined as a type of execution of financial services within an application, or the ability to bank anytime and anywhere. Gamification technology has historically been associated with business and work, helping to complete tasks faster, but also the potential to fulfill purposes. The fact that people like having fun in life inspired us to align gamification into the financial industry. Game principles is used in Fintech to drive behaviours and produce desired effects and results, transforming users’ everyday interactions into meaningful and measurable business purposes.

Gamification can be applied within online banking, played by individuals or by teams to generate a broad range of innovative and enhanced banking applications, to help visualize and explain complex banking tasks like transactions in everyday banking management. 

There are strongly divided opinions about gamification in the financial industry to provide structure and measure progress, many critical voices say that this would undermine the reputation of being serious. But researchers have to gain the opposite results in studies where gamification techniques may produce a variety of benefits depending on the context of implementation. It can produce enjoyment and satisfaction, positive emotions, strong social relationships and a sense of accomplishment, in other way generate more profit for banks.

Gamification vs other systems in Fintech

Insert Coin has implemented a methodology called UTAUT2, a model developed by Venkatesh et al. (2012).

The model has empirically been tested and proven to be superior compared to other models in other systems and is therefore used related to GWEN. The impact of gamification in this model will become one of the most important enhancers of online banking levels of acceptance in the upcoming years.

The definitions of performance expectancy show that individuals will
use the banking services if they believe it will have positive outcomes. Studies confirm that consumers who find banking easier to use become more willing to do transactions (Lin, 2011). To include social features and favorable set of conditions such as online tutorials or demos in the gamification service contribute to a greater likelihood to accept the banking in applications. The methodology summarizes as follow

Performance expectancy will positively affect behavioural intention
Effort expectancy will positively affect behavioural intention
Social influence will positively affect behavioural intention
Facilitating conditions will positively affect behavioural intention
Facilitating conditions will positively affect use behaviour

Habits reflect the multiple results of previous experiences regarding to Venkatesh (2012) and the frequency of past behaviours is considered to be one of the most important factors that affect present bahaviours and that is the reason why users tend to adopt tasks and routines into the mobile banking system. Therefore the methodology summarize as follows:

Hedonic motivation will positively affect behavioural intention

Price value will positively affect behavioural intention

Habit will positively affect behavioural intention

Habit will positively affect use behaviour

Research confirms that UTAUT2 is one of the most complete theoretical models used in the context of information systems in the financial industry. Understanding the key outcomes of this model is crucial to design, refine and implement banking services that yield high consumer acceptance. Understanding the main factors affecting user acceptance concerned with performance and effort expectancy banks will be able to evolve and aligning functionalities with real customer’s needs.

There are not that many substitutes for Gamification to drive engagement and create an enjoyable user journey. To mention one is the webchat with integrated chatbots. This allows mobile banking applications to boost digital engagement an optimal user experience by offering quick and personalized interactions.

Gamification and user engagement

Applying game mechanics to motivate and drive engagement in the nongame context will change banking user bahaviour, improving service acceptance and use. New generations are entering the field and the question so important to ask is why most of the mobile banking services still remain so serious? Why can’t users have an excellent customer experience, fun, and enjoyment in their customer journey path in the banks?

Users get engaged through competition, teamwork, intrigue, curiosity, and problem-solving helping in infusing a feeling of ownership of performance and results. Points for actions, badges for rewards and leaderboard for competition, cash prizes, discounts and other free perks to engage service management. This to give positive feedback and reinforce loyalty.

Some gamification customer stories and studies from Fintech

In the last few years, the financial industry has witnessed an accelerated and consistent growth of banks and financial institutions that decided to apply game mechanics and game design techniques to their systems and services. There are several successful examples in South America. One example is Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentina, where they let customers earn points by using the bank ́s transactional site and redeem them for products and services. allows users to perform financial activities to earn credits and money prizes.

Another good example is “Punch the pig” that allows users to transfer money to a growth account by punching a pig whenever it pops up. Or Barclays 56 sage street application which is an interactive virtual city where players learn money management skills. This has encouraged other financial institutions to do the same, adopt gamification and game mechanics into the user journey path.

GWEN as a Solution in Fintech

A pilot project has been made for SEB in their mobile banking application where module package including modules as Level, Achievements, Shop and Mission. The overall purpose was to make the user journey path more engaging and fun in the SEB mobile banking services with features like SEB Rewards with Value Points and earned SEB coins, Loyalty Program with loyalty level and My Journey.