This month, Corporate Insight is adding USAA to its Bank Monitor coverage group. A financial institution with a long history of working with U.S. servicemen, USAA has expanded its presence in recent years through aggressive branding and advertising, to the point that most Americans are now familiar with the firm. USAA’s growing scope and exposure are in lockstep with its reputation for innovation – it was one of the very first banks to offer Remote Deposit Capture – and we expect its inclusion in the Bank Monitor coverage group to help bring new insights and trends to the forefront of our research.
The firm has only a single full-service branch, located in Texas, and account holders are expected to conduct transactions and use their accounts largely through online and mobile banking platforms. The firm services a basic suite of deposit accounts that include USAA Secure Checking; accounts designated for military recruits, minors and college students; and savings and CD products. Each account offers access to online management including free bill pay, person-to-person payments, external transfers and personalized budgeting tools.
USAA Banking Services
As a nice (perhaps essential) option for much of its itinerant clientele, USAA partners with the United Parcel Service to offer its Easy Deposit service, through which customers can deposit checks at UPS locations. Debit card holders can also withdraw cash from most ATMs nationwide at no charge, with reimbursements up to $15 a month of other banks’ service fees. USAA also tends to take an innovative approach to banking services, leading the field in adopting new technologies for mobile banking, including Touch ID and ApplePay.
The USAA public site provides tools, planners and calculators for a litany of scenarios that can impact a consumer’s financial picture, from general finances to life events and natural disasters. Each category features graphic-laden pages and tabs, with easy-to-read guides and helpful overviews of banking features. While the site is rich with links, slogans and images, it is also an example of the missteps of showcasing abundance. In USAA’s case, features and services are linked from a top-heavy navigation menu of account types and individual products, whereas links and information on individual pages are minimized, with bulleted lists and images. The Our Products menu boasts over 50 links of account types and resources for customers; although they drive home the point that USAA has a lot to offer potential customers, it is cumbersome, as users are accustomed to selection tools and separate navigation options for different financial products.
Our Products Menu
Overall, the firm and its website offer a wealth of resources and options to clients, which we look forward to reporting and analyzing as part of our coverage of the banking industry. Its robust features, services and guides offer valuable insight into USAA’s customer experience, for which they are highly regarded. Corporate Insight recently provided overviews of USAA’s public and private sites for our clients with the first July installments of the Bank and Credit Card Monitor updates (CI is also adding USAA to its Credit Card Monitor coverage this month; for more information on USAA’s credit card products, please click here).