Tuesday, September 20, 2016

FinTechs: Reducing the Cost of Living in Nigeria

It has been claimed that digital finance a financial sector's disruption brought about by amazing growth of fintechs is up to the task in strengthening an individual's purse as well as re-positioning a nations's economy, if properly harnessed.
Cost of Living: Source

In my personal opinion, whatever helps you spend less without compromising quality and/or improves quality of service is reducing your cost of living. Also, whatever makes you overcome recurrent chores with much ease and less cost is not only improving your efficiency but indirectly
your standard of living. Improving cost and standard of living is what the influx of FinTechs are doing to smart Nigerians who have identified and adopted their services.

On Many occasions I have completed online transactions such as international purchase of goods, international membership subscriptions, funding of internet accounts, transfer of funds to local bank accounts (inter/intra-banks), use of ATM cards online, mobile banking etc, all done seamlessly and successfully without leaving my room. ATM/POS/Web transaction is the way to go in the 21st century.

All my international transactions I have completed successfully and hassle-free.

By online means I have saved myself several times over from: 
  • Any need for domiciliary account before making cross-border transactions, never have I had any need for it. 
  • Going to the Bureau de Exchange 
  • Having to carry large sum about, dangerous! 
  • Going to the banking hall to queue for hours 
  • Unnecessary waste of precious time and energy. 
Every transaction was done with my Debit Cards within the past two years. What a relieve? These are semi-automated ways of doing things that people have to experience, enjoy and embrace to make life a whole lot easier daily.

  • The fees charged by FinTechs and mobile/online platforms are ridiculously lesser than the amount spent on executing the same task by physical transactions over the counter in a banking hall, 
  • Saves time 
  • Saves energy and prevents stress 
  • Gives bank officials more time to focus on important things than working overtime daily and on weekends. 
However, there have been issues of glitches in online transactions. That is to be expected as nothing human-made is perfect. 
Most flaws experienced include short or temporary delay in transfer or rollback of funds some times, internet failure etc. Most of these challenges are nothing serious, automatic rollback are said to be effected within 3 weeks. For quick action, any delay in [[funds rollback]] can be adequately sorted out by [[contacting technical department/personnel]] of the appropriate quarters.

The good tidings that come with the growth of FinTechs in Nigerian financial ecosystem is immense but the level of adoption or consumer education about them is shamefully low. How well people can adopt the solutions as they did telecommunications depends on the level of awareness at the grass root level, companies should make this their priorities. There is need to educate Nigerians on participating more in mobile, online financial services as against conventional over the counter. 

I seldom enter a banking hall unless on occasions requiring my physical presence, may be once in a while and probably to pick up a new ATM card or like the recent BVN verification exercise. ATM machine is available as well as the online alternatives for whichever transaction. Even, cardless ATM withdrawal service is in town. A trader who handles cash daily have the right to enter a banking hall often, save for that, I do all my things online even banks' customer care services can be accessed online.

Lest I forget, Lagos is not the same thing as Nigeria, it is but a fraction of Nigeria, targeting potential consumers of these solutions from other parts of the country will not be a wild goose chase.

Disclaimer: Any information on this blog is not an expert advice!

FAQs on the companies's webpages are usually very rich, avail yourself to them.