Gamification in banking: how to engage digital customers with interactive experiences

Digital transformation is accelerating. And it’s not just happening in the tech sector - it’s happening everywhere. Businesses are turning digital to stay competitive and attract new customers. This is especially true in the banking sector, where many traditional banks are trying to keep up with a rapidly changing market. 

Deloitte reports that the Bank of America’s mobile app has seen a 117% increase in deposits. It’s clear that there’s an increasing need for the banking sector to create engaging experiences for digital customers

One way banks are creating an engaging digital presence is through gamification.


What is gamification?

Gamification uses human psychology to encourage people to take specific actions in a non-game context. By gamifying the user experience, banks can increase engagement and drive behaviours that support business goals. 


How does gamification work?

A gamified experience uses any game-like feature to engage customers. For example, the use of progress badges, trophies or leaderboards can activate an innate human desire for achievement and competitiveness. 


Why should banks consider using gamification?

Businesses across the banking sector can use gamification to keep customer retention rates high and drive customer loyalty. It’s also an effective way to stand out from competitors. 

Looking for example of gamification?


Why is it important for banks to keep engagement rates high?

Recently, there has been a surge in the number of “challenger banks” (or “neobanks”) - which are banks that operate entirely online. Unlike traditional banks, these digitised banks are not held back by legacy systems or resistance to change. 

Challenger banks such as Monzo and Revolut have convinced many customers to switch. And it’s partly because they have created a more interactive and engaging banking experience. 

Monzo, for example, stands out in the industry with their gamified banking app. The app features “challenges” that unlock different achievements throughout the whole customer journey: “the instruction menu upon setting up an account could easily be mistaken for a set of tasks on a video game”. 


Monzo bank also introduced a referral scheme with a long waiting list. App users can only move forward in the queue by referring the product to a friend. The ‘waiting list’ taps into a customer’s innate desire for exclusivity and competition. Such strategies prove effective - Monzo has grown its customer base to over 5 million users without any physical branches. 

Similarly, the Revolut app rewards users with an exclusively designed metal credit card when they complete a referral. Users share pictures of their exclusive cards on social media, creating free word-of-mouth marketing. Customers can also earn points for making transactions, sending money to other Revolut customers, and more. The more interactions Revolut customers make, the more points they receive. 

Revolut app gamification 


Vishaal Vadher, senior product owner at Revolut explains: “We want our customers to be rewarded for choosing Revolut as their everyday financial partner and to have the chance to win great prizes while they already benefit from many other innovative features.”

Revolut points rewards
Revolut competitions and prizes

These features are a great example of event-based systems - technology that can reward customers for any kind of interaction.

What is event-based loyalty?

Find out more here


How loyalty software can help banks retain customers

The modern banking customer has changed (and not necessarily for the better). They are more tech-savvy than ever before, and they expect to engage with their bank in a way that goes beyond just deposits and withdrawals.

That’s where loyalty software comes in. It allows banks to create engagement tools that make banking easier and more fun for customers. Here are just some of the ways that loyalty technology can help the banking sector:

  • Create gamified campaigns to increase interactions and engagement
  • Collect detailed data on customer behaviour and preferences 
  • Get AI insights to predict customer churn and improve retention
  • Use rewards to incentivize desired behaviours and actions
  • End-to-end campaign management
  • Referral management 
  • Cross-sell and up-sell existing customers into additional products and services 


How can gamified banking benefit banks and customers?

With gamification, banks can better engage customers and motivate them to keep using their products. Here are some potential benefits for customers:

  • Getting personalised recommendations for products and services based on their needs and preferences
  • Receiving a more valuable service that is more fun and rewarding to use
  • Gamified rewards can ‘pay customers back’ for choosing a particular bank 
  • Learning about personal finance - gamified education resources can help customers improve their financial literacy 


But benefits aren’t just for the customers - banks get to benefit from:

  • Insightful customer data that helps improve existing products and services
  • Customer retention and reducing switching
  • New customer acquisition - by incentivising new customers to join or via word of mouth marketing 
  • More control over customer behaviour - reward specific actions to drive the activities you want to see more of 
  • A rewards offering can even pay for itself - get in touch if you want to know more about our rewards marketplace product



Banking gamification in practice

White Label Loyalty partners with OTP bank to increase customer engagement


OTP bank, a top-tier player in the financial sector of Central and Eastern Europe, has launched a program to develop banking services that meet consumer needs. The banking group is committed to new innovations and launched an international program to find solutions to a range of business requirements. 


White Label Loyalty is one of 12 businesses selected in a multi-stage process from 265 applicants. 


As part of the program, White Label Loyalty is partnering with OTP bank to improve the customer experience through gamification, rewards and engagement. 

Our loyalty engine will enable the banking group to run a dedicated banking loyalty program for OTP’s end customers. The purpose of this project is to increase customer activity and engagement, cross-sell into additional products and create organic advocacy with rewards. 


You can find out more about the program here

To compete with challenger banks, traditional financial institutions must offer a more engaging experience.

Banking might not seem like an obvious candidate for gamification. After all, banking has traditionally been viewed as fairly transactional and not very engaging. And, on the surface, many bank apps are still quite basic. 

But as banks look to stay relevant with digitally-informed customers, they're starting to utilize gamification techniques - from collecting points for completing basic banking tasks to awarding badges for various ‘achievements’. 

Banks are realizing that users want more from their digital experience. Loyalty tools like White Label Loyalty can help banks create a better user experience for all customers.

White Label Loyalty’s platform merges easily with your existing tech systems, giving you the tools to create engaging campaigns without complexity. Want to learn more about what our software can do for your business? Get in touch or download our White Paper.

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Helen Walker

Helen Walker

Senior Content Marketing Executive

Helen is our Senior Content Marketing Executive. She shares valuable information about the Future of Loyalty and will keep you up to date on the latest industry insights...

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Loyalty Gamification
Digital Loyalty
Consumer Trends
Customer Satisfaction