Elevating premier banking experience: Tailoring exclusive features for mass affluent customers

Commonwealth bank
In an effort to cater to the needs of mass affluent customers, Commbank embarked on a UX journey to elevate its premier banking experience. The goal was to provide a seamless, personalized, and eexclusive features that resonate with the high expectations of this discerning customer segment.

Mass affluent customers represent a significant opportunity for financial institutions. They demand more than just basic banking; they seek a sophisticated, seamless, and personalized banking experience.


To create a bespoke banking experience for mass affluent clients that combines personalized service with advanced digital features, driving customer satisfaction and loyalty.


  1. To deliver an exceptional digital banking experience tailored to mass affluent customers.
  2. To differentiate the premier banking service with exclusive features that meet the unique needs of this segment.
  3. To increase customer satisfaction, loyalty, and retention within the mass affluent demographic.
There was an opportunity to improve customer advocacy, drive significant business outcomes, create a virtuous cycle of loyalty, and establish a clearer differentiation between mass and private offerings, ensuring Commbank's distinction.

UX research plan

In Phase 1, the discovery research consisted of conducting up to four rounds of ad hoc research activities. These activities were centered around validating feature prioritization, exploring user experience design in a co-creative manner, testing various concepts, and diagnosing the results of different experiments. This phase was instrumental in laying the groundwork for subsequent development and design efforts.

During Phase 2, the delivery research incorporated up to ten rounds of a rapid and iterative process known as "Cadence." This methodical approach was particularly effective in identifying and addressing usability issues, with each round uncovering approximately 80% of existing problems. This phase was crucial for refining the user experience and ensuring the delivery of a well-crafted final product.

Understanding the customer

A quantitative analysis was aimed at capturing a comprehensive understanding of this customer segment to inform strategic decisions. It involved conducting surveys and analyzing financial behavior data to gain insights into the demographics, preferences, and pain points of mass affluent clients.

Through qualitative insights gathered from in-depth interviews and day-in-the-life studies, a nuanced understanding of the expectations held by clients for premium banking services was developed. These methods offered a detailed perspective on the unique needs and desires of customers seeking a superior banking experience.

Three distinct personas were crafted to represent the varying customer profiles within the target market:

  1. The busy professional, characterized by their time-constrained schedule and need for efficient banking solutions
  2. The tech-savvy investor, who prefers advanced digital tools for managing investments
  3. The cautious planner, who approaches financial decisions with thoroughness and seeks dependable banking services.

Each persona encapsulated unique banking behaviors and service expectations, aiding in the development of tailored banking experiences.

Identifying customer's pain points

Challenges were evident in the current banking experience, marked by a distinct lack of personalized investment advice tailored to individual financial goals. Customers also faced inefficiencies in accessing priority customer service, leading to potential dissatisfaction. Furthermore, the digital banking tools available were not as intuitive as needed, complicating the user experience. Lastly, the rewards and loyalty programs in place failed to meet the expectations of customers, reflecting an inadequacy in acknowledging and valuing customer loyalty.

Gap Analysis

To deliver valuable services to our mass affluent customers, we needed to understand their characteristics, the pains they experienced, and the opportunities for these pains to be alleviated digitally. We identified key deliverables over the past 3 months:

  • Developed Archetypes;
  • Created a Service Blueprint;
  • Conducted a Co-Creation Workshop with mass affluent customers;
  • Developed Prototypes;
  • Performed Usability tests;
  • Gathered Testing insights


Brainstorming sessions with stakeholders were pivotal in developing a suite of exclusive features aimed at enhancing the banking experience.

These sessions yielded the conceptualization of personalized wealth management dashboards that provide a tailored overview of finances and concierge-style customer service for a more bespoke interaction.

Advanced security protocols were proposed to fortify the protection of customer data, along with an array of rewards and offers to enrich the banking relationship.

The ideas extended to a complete reskin of the digital interface, introduction of a world debit card, and the prioritization of the customer's preferred "Channel of choice" for interactions.

The team also envisioned an efficient onboarding process, a priority contact hub, and access to specialist contacts for expert advice.

Premier offers, tailored financial education, and investment tools were considered to support family financial growth and the Grow wealth framework.

A Goal mindset was promoted to encourage financial planning, complemented by Digital engagement strategies like smart notifications to keep customers informed and engaged.


An iterative design process was employed, starting with low-fidelity sketches and evolving into high-fidelity, interactive prototypes.

User testing

10 rounds of user testing were conducted to refine the interface, the interaction, and the overall user journey.

Premium features for premier banking customers

These enhanced features are meticulously crafted to provide an enriched, tailored, and sophisticated banking experience that caters to the distinct needs of premier banking clientele, fostering loyalty and facilitating financial prosperity.

  • Rewards and Offers: This feature provides exclusive rewards and special offers tailored to the affluent lifestyle, such as higher cashback percentages, bonus points on certain transactions, access to luxury events, or discounts with partner brands.
  • Reskin: 'Reskin' refers to the customization of the banking app's user interface to match the premium nature of the service. This might involve a more sophisticated design language, exclusive themes, or layouts that highlight premier services.
  • World Debit Card: A world debit card is typically a premium debit card offering enhanced benefits such as higher withdrawal limits, lower foreign transaction fees, comprehensive travel insurance, and access to airport lounges worldwide.
  • Prioritized "Channel of Choice": This allows customers to choose their preferred method of communication and assures that they receive priority service through that channel, whether it's via phone, email, in-app messaging, or face-to-face interactions.
  • Onboarding: The onboarding process for premier banking customers is designed to be seamless and personalized. It may include a dedicated relationship manager to guide the customer through setting up their accounts and services.
  • Priority contact hub: A dedicated contact center that prioritizes calls and messages from premier customers, ensuring they receive immediate and personalized service.
  • Specialist contact: Access to specialists such as investment advisors, mortgage consultants, or wealth planners who provide expert advice tailored to the customer's individual financial needs.
  • Premier offers: Exclusive deals or opportunities that are not available to regular customers, such as pre-release investment opportunities, preferential mortgage rates, or first access to new banking products.
  • Financial education: Customized educational content and tools designed to help affluent customers understand complex financial concepts, stay informed about market trends, and make smarter financial decisions.
  • Investing: A feature or service offering that provides premium customers with investment opportunities, tools for portfolio management, and personalized investment advice to optimize their wealth.
  • For family: Services that cater to the family unit, such as family wealth management, legacy planning, and options for family accounts with shared benefits and rewards.
  • Grow wealth framework: A structured approach provided by the bank to help customers grow their wealth. This could include investment planning services, tax optimization strategies, and retirement planning.
  • Goal mindset: Tools and services that encourage customers to set financial goals and track progress, often integrated with financial planning and advisory services to help customers achieve their objectives.
  • Digital engagement: Engagement strategies that leverage digital channels to provide customers with a seamless and interactive online experience. This can include webinars, virtual financial advisory sessions, and interactive wealth management tools.
  • Smart notifications: Tailored alerts that are more than just transactional updates. These could include personalized tips, reminders for financial goals, market movement information, or notifications about new premier offers.

Each feature is aimed at providing a comprehensive, engaging, and personalized banking experience for mass affluent customers, encouraging loyalty and long-term financial growth.

Lessons learned from concept testing

Personalization is an essential aspect of catering to the needs and expectations of mass affluent customers, who often seek services and products that align with their individual preferences and lifestyles. Similarly, the incorporation of continuous user feedback plays a pivotal role in the iterative design process, ensuring that products evolve in a way that is responsive to user needs and preferences. This approach to design refinement and enhancement is crucial for the development of successful products.

Next steps

The momentum was to be sustained through a series of recommendations: Firstly, the introduction of machine learning was proposed to tailor financial advice more personally to the clients' needs. Secondly, it was suggested to broaden the concierge services to encompass lifestyle management, thus providing a more holistic service experience. Lastly, the creation of an exclusive community platform was advised to facilitate networking and the sharing of financial insights among members.