Financial Firms to Web Users: Help Yourself
Seeking competitive advantage, banks, brokerages and mutual funds will triple spending on Web self-service software over the next three years, according to a Newton, Mass., market researcher.Seeking an advantage in a highly competitive industry, banks, brokerages and mutual fund operators will triple their spending on Web self-service software over the next three years, according to Meridien Research.
"Although a large percentage of institutions already have some Internet-based self service options, very few today offer advanced facilities such as structured dialog and virtual agents," said Richard Bell, a senior analyst with the Newton, Mass., firm. "As a result, investment in Web self-service is a significant differentiator and potential competitive advantage."
The 500 largest financial service firms will boost budgets for direct deployments of self service applications from $33.9 million in 2001 to $99.8 million in 2004, Meridien estimates.
Web self service includes a variety of offerings including frequently asked questions (FAQs), search engines, databases with natural language query options, structured dialogue systems and virtual agents.