Online and mobile banking offer quite a bit more than bill pay, PDF statements and a summary of recent activity. Some of the best time-saving features aren’t as well known, such as:
- Alerts. It’s common knowledge that it’s a good idea to frequently monitor bank activity for errors and fraudulent activity. I have signed up for e-mail alerts whenever there are international, Internet, phone or mail order purchases made with my debit card, as well as when purchases and ATM withdrawals exceed a certain amount in a given day. For a credit card I use once a century, I get e-mails whenever charges exceed $0.01. Alerts don’t completely replace my manual monitoring, but are more effective than daily booting up my computer, mistyping my password, re-entering the correct password, entering my PIN, selecting the checking account, perusing the recent transactions, and trying to remember what that $100 charge at the electronics store was for.
- Mobile Deposit. Sign the check, open the mobile app, enter the amount, take a picture of the check, and it’s done! Wow! That was so much easier than finding a deposit slip, filling it out, driving ten minutes to the bank, waiting behind two cars in the drive-through teller line, and opening that pesky vacuum tube canister!
- Bank Feeds. Today’s personal finance and business accounting software can connect to bank accounts and import transactions on a daily basis, and that’s just the beginning. Xero, the software I use for my personal finances, easily creates and automatically classifies transactions based on a predetermined set of rules. It’s been a much better experience than the poke-your-eyes-out manual data entry that I used to do!
What online or mobile banking features make your life easier?