Think older clients aren’t savvy enough for financial tech solutions? Think again

Senior couple laughing while using their tablet

By AdviceBridge

If you’re resistant to introducing technology changes to your older clients, it might be time for a re-think.

Financial advice firms who don’t start using client-facing technology, such as client portals, to improve their service offering are in danger of being left behind.

Using technology for secure client communication, document sharing, and storage can reduce administration. Not to mention the time and money saved on printing, posting, and waiting for documents to be sent and returned through snail mail.

It can also allow clients access up-to-date information on their data and investments without the need to ask you to retrieve and share it with them.

Many advisers think it will be too difficult to introduce technology to their older clients

Many advisers we speak to are reluctant to introduce technology to their older clients because they believe it will be too complicated. They think it will be time-consuming and difficult to educate senior clients in how to use the tech and expect it to cause countless difficulties.

But studies suggest this assumption is wrong.

Intelliflo dug into their data and found that clients aged between 50 and 60 used their portal the most. And are almost twice as active as clients in their 20s and 30s.

The pandemic and subsequent lockdowns and restrictions caused a change in the role technology played for us all, including older people.

Data shared by Forbes shows that at the beginning of the pandemic people downloading the Zoom app were often between 35 and 49. However, 20% of downloads were made by those aged between 50 and 64 and 10% were over 65.

At the end of 2019, Zoom was primarily used for virtual meetings and had around 10 million daily users. By March 2020, daily users had jumped to 200 million, and by December 2020 had rocketed to 350 million.

41% of people aged between 60 and 74 are using the internet more

Age UK also looked at the affect the pandemic has had on internet use among Brits aged 52 and above. The charity analysed data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing, from over 7,000 responses.

Although the charity is concerned about the breadth of digital exclusion, especially for people aged 75 and over, Age UK found that 45% of 52- to 64-year-olds reported using the internet more, as did 41% of 60- to 74-year-olds.

As you might expect, popular online activities include email, online shopping, video and voice calls and social networking.

But the number of older people managing their finances online is telling:

  • 68% of those aged 50 – 64
  • 59% of those aged 65 – 74
  • 44% of people aged 75 and over managed their finances online last year.

Virtual online meetings remain popular

Many advisers found that the switch to online meetings had been well-received by most of their clients, with some expressing that virtual meetings were preferable.

The situation around Covid remains fluid, and so must the ways advisers engage with their clients. Some clients will prefer to do things face-to-face again now they have the option, but the number of clients wanting an online or hybrid advice experience is likely to grow in the future.

People in their 50s and 60s are the most active portal users

Advice clients in their 50s and 60s are the most active portal users. This may be because it is people in this age range who are most likely to have engaged with the financial planning process and understand its power.

They are also often closer to or at retirement and so have a greater interest in how their decisions will affect their income in later life.

Considering that many older clients have adapted or increased their reliance on technology over the last 18 months, the idea of introducing them to the immediacy and flexibility of a client portal to stay abreast of their financial situation may be more welcome than you thought.

The AdviceBridge client-side app may be the ideal solution for older clients

The easy-to-use illustrative AdviceBridge client-side app creates greater touchpoints and helps increase familiarity and greater trust.

The goals-based tools enable your clients to see how altering their finances will affect them now and in retirement. And, crucially, they can access information 24/7.

The app will alert you to any updates or changes in their financial situation, enabling you to deliver timely, on-point advice with minimal effort.

Get in touch

If you want to find out how AdviceBridge can benefit your clients and help you grow your business, please get in touch. Email or call us on 020 3925 3850.