Establishing why law firms should revise how they receive and monitor client payments
Out with the old?
The unforeseen circumstances of the past year have comprehensively impacted the way industries model their business. It isn’t a matter of rolling with the punches, but in-fact working smarter: those that succeed during adverse conditions acclimatise to best fit the needs of their clients when spending money. It isn’t about jumping ship or turning your back on age-old courses of action; actions of which returning clients and older audiences may feel more comfortable in adopting. Existing procedures shouldn’t be deemed obsolete, even if a more efficient method of dealing with law-related outcomes prevails. It’s about providing your clients with an option (instead of just free to download alternatives); presenting a choice of how users prefer to manage their interactions and subsequent dealings with your law firm, throughout their journey.
Ensuring actionable updates, case developments, overall communication and holistic procedures are collectively succinct between all involved parties is integral. And branded mobile apps are fast becoming the normative, with law firms across the country coming to terms with a growing expectation of applied technology to aid in the enhancement of user experience.
Embracing the present
Never has a multi-accessible platform yielded such an extensive level of actionable operations.
Tailored built mobile technology enables the clients of your law firm to:
- Track matter updates
- Review & e-sign TA forms
- Chat with allocated staff members
- Submit singular reviews onto multi-integrated platforms
These examples are but a drop in the ocean compared to the sheer number of tasks that can be achieved using a tailored mobile app. Most firms that are already offering their clients the chance to carry out matters via a paid app have seen an unprecedented level of growing popularity amongst their audience. Users that were once apprehensive of utilising mobile-based apps to conduct such matters, are now enlightened at how user friendly and client-centric they can be.
As technology becomes more sophisticated and user friendly (for laptops, smartphones or tablets), so does society’s capacity to work it.
ComScore data recorded the average use of mobile apps in 2018 was ahead at 87%, compared to standard web browsing. By 2019, this increased again to 90%.
There are a multitude of reasons as to why mobile apps dominate user engagement, and this is reflective across most industries that embrace technological advancement. An app provides a direct access point, and user experience is typically slicker compared to web experience.
To accommodate the growth in mobile-app usage, companies across multiple industries are implementing in app purchases, auto renewable subscriptions and client-centric widgets to ensure that users are capable in conducting a variance of tasks without alternating between various applications and modes of communication.
Will a branded app benefit my firm?
The growing level of features that can be implemented onto a standard mobile app (whether that is iOS or the Google Play Store App) has advanced immeasurably for app users and app developers, leading to a dissent of mobile website usage due to limiting functionality. Users must physically download mobile apps onto their device. Once installed, the app simply generates pre-downloaded content, thus increasing average user-speed.
With a tailor-made interface to accommodate users, such apps are designed explicitly for supported mobile devices, again enhancing user experience. From online tutorials to step-by-step instructions, users have never been more supported when it comes to managing their matters via a firm’s app. With a plethora of functions enabling a more automated experience for clients, referrers and staff, Perfect Portal’s tailored mobile apps have collaborated with other technology providers to ensure our products are working at their most sophisticated level.
Perfect Portal’s new integration with InfoTrack’s eCOS (electronic client onboarding solution) enables firms to onboard new clients directly through their mobile app, enhancing overall efficiencies through digitalised onboarding. Further partnerships with established software providers from Stripe, Tikit P4W and LEAP ensure that Perfect Portal's mobile applications and online portal access can be seamlessly integrated with the most used customer management systems for law firms across the country.
Acquiring a tailored mobile app in its most advanced level of development means not alone will your firm be able to deal with a higher concentration of cases more effectively, but each unique case can be managed more effectively. This facilitates a higher level of client satisfaction, driving your online presence through integrated client reviews whilst generating more organic leads for your goods or services.
"We are able to deliver a fantastic, digitised journey to our customers and introducers through our branded mobile app and portal. We have Perfect Portal integrated with our case management system, which removes the need to access multiple platforms and the need to re-key data, saving our staff time. Our clients are kept up to date on their transaction progress through the matter tracking facilities and it allows the client to work seamlessly with us from their own device. We are a digital driven law firm, and these tools enable us to provide a greater experience to everyone involved.” – Rob McKellar, Senior Practice Director I Slater & Gordon
In just over 18 months, Perfect Portal have set up 130+ personalised mobile apps for law firms in both the UK and Australia. Last month, we documented a record number of firms requesting the premium package so they could also get set up and running with their own customised mobile app. There has never been a better time to invest in the technology.
Introducing Payment on Account (POA)
Payments have become a key ingredient for mobile strategy. In an extensive study conducted by the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC), the results identified how speed, security, convenience and cost have a statistically significant influence on the adoption and use of selected payment instruments. Straightforward transactions in which the sender and receiver maintain control is the intention, and the payment on account feature is the catalyst in accomplishing this.
By 2022, the transaction value of mobile payment apps is projected to surpass over €14 trillion. In-app mobile payments will soon be routine, replacing the need for clients to conduct transactions via separate apps, or disclose their financial details over the phone.
This feature serves as a key in creating a more secure and seamless method of payment: unlocking the power of digital.
The most crucial of requirements your clients will want to know is if their money is in safe hands. That’s why the overall functionality and security of mobile integrated payment features are regularly modified to ensure your personal details and transaction information aren’t being compromised.
How receptive will your clients be to this latest method of payment?
From a conveyancing perspective, the average age range for first-time homeowners has risen by two years over the past decade. This, however, hasn’t deterred those over the age bracket of 34 years to use mobile finance technology to conduct their business. The 18–34-year bracket is, as you would expect, at the top of the pile when it comes to overall usage of mobile wallets and mobile apps that have the in app purchases on the account feature.
The subsequent rise in mobile usage and dependence on such means has influenced all age ranges, including that of the post-millennial era. Between the ages of 35—44 years, 44% of recorded users regularly utilise their mobile apps and frequently make payments through various mobile applications.
Although you do experience a subsequent drop of engagement when it comes to older generations, there has still been a notable increase in users within the +55 years age category that are now relying on such systems to conduct their financial matters. Granting an option of how clients may wish to conduct payments is a discernible position in which a law firm should stand. Naturally, some clients will opt for more conventional, traditionalist means of payment, and this shouldn’t be renounced, no matter how impractical and time consuming these methods may be.
Firms that have already integrated this feature into their own branded apps have already experienced a wealth of internal benefits, as well as positive feedback from clients that have already conducted their transactions through the payment methods (apple pay, credit card, etc) on the account feature.
"Setting up the payment on account feature could not have been easier, and it has added to what was already a great system. Our clients love it and find it so easy to use and it saves all of us time as we no longer need to take card payments over the phone. Choosing to move to the branded app and making use of all of the features that come with it has been the best decision that we have made in progressing our business and communicating with our clients." – Bethany Howells, Conveyancing Executive I HPLC Conveyancing
Once a payment has been initiated via the app, the sender will receive an immediate email notification to confirm their funds are on the way. Upon receipt, the fee earner will be notified via email, disclosing the transaction details to ensure employees of your firm are aware of incoming funds, also giving them the tools to highlight outstanding payments more efficiently. Employees can also track received funds via the report suite on Perfect Portal. This cloud-based system updates automatically so all financial matters can be accessed 24/7. The obvious benefit to this is the overall speed it takes to send and receive funds. Just last week, a firm recorded their fastest turn over, with a client successfully sending a transaction of which the firm received in available funds in under 3-minutes.
Pretty impressive right?
Book a demo now to find out how we can get the payment on account feature set up on your firm’s tailored app today!