Marc Ferrentino, Chief Strategy Officer“Smartphones not only empower customers to interact with their financial institutions digitally, but also act as a bridge between digital financial services and brick-and-mortar locations,” begins Marc Ferrentino, Chief Strategy Officer, Yext. With the rise of mobile search, ensuring consumers obtain all the required information accurately and instantly through search results creates a better client experience. While financial institutions tend to be proficient at data management in areas like CRM and employee data, they often trail behind in organizing and leveraging their location data effectively.
“Yext was born to put brick-and-mortar businesses on the map, so they can compete in today’s mobile-first world,” asserts Ferrentino. Yext’s platform and product portfolio help firms attract new customers with search-optimized location information while making it easy for existing customers to find their nearest branch, advisor, agent, or ATM.
When consumers come across incorrect information about a bank in a map, their trust in the financial service provider is diminished. To help businesses maintain trust by actively managing their location data, Yext’s Listings offering allows businesses to update the information that appears in search results—name, address, phone number, open hours, and specialties—in real time. “Our PowerListings Network of search engines, social networks, maps, and apps allows businesses to make real-time updates in our system and have them automatically update across over 100 online publishers,” says Ferrentino.
Search engines work by continuously pulling information on a business that their algorithms identify as most up to date, so even if a listing is rectified once, it will change later and could potentially become incorrect again. To prevent this, whenever an institution loads its location data into Yext’s system, the company runs a Match search using its database and software integrations through the PowerListings Network to identify other business listings corresponding to the same location. This makes it possible to Lock listings, preventing automatic changes to information due to subsequent search crawling. Match and Lock returns control to the business over how its locations appear online.
Yext was born to put brick-and-mortar businesses on the map, so they can compete in today’s mobile-first world
“Our new Location Cloud Platform enables financial institutions to take advantage of their location information in innovative ways by building new integrations with Yext,” said Ferrentino. Using the platform, companies can plug in and use their location data to do things like enhance smart CRM by incorporating location-specific information into customer histories, improve customer support by localizing it to the right representatives, respond to location reviews through support software.
Financial institutions especially need to ensure the accuracy of their information due to strict regulations. Yext’s Pages builds SEO-optimized local pages for businesses to provide high-quality information about the specific business location, keeping customers informed and improving search rankings. Yext’s Pages archives old versions of location websites, enabling clients to easily pull up what their sites looked like on a given date during an audit.
Another front on which financial institutions are competing is online location reviews. Yext’s Reviews product helps businesses generate reviews easily from their client base, activating the existing reserve of satisfied customers to bring up their ratings. Yext has built a balancing algorithm that automatically determines which reviews site will be most impactful for businesses, and asks consumers to leave reviews there.
“Our goal is to put millions of business locations all over the world on the map, and we are well on our way with over 800,000 already,” says Ferrentino. Yext is committed to keeping its clients ahead of the curve in this booming area of technology so they can provide the best possible service to their customers. “We believe the benefits of effective Location Data Management are endless, both for informing and serving customers and for being found in the new age of mobile search,” concludes Ferrentino.