Case Study: Savings Bank of Mendocino County

July 26, 2021 by Libby Kane

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Savings Bank of Mendocino County partners with Apiture to deliver a competitive business banking experience to their customers

Savings Bank of Mendocino County has served their community in Northern California for over a century. The bank’s innovative and digital-first approach has given the bank a competitive advantage and earned them over 38,000 accounts.

Now, Savings Bank has looked beyond just modernizing their digital channels and have also redesigned their branches into “banking centers.” The SBMC Banking Centers provide an interactive and customer-centric experience for guests. Instead of walking up to a teller desk, customers will be approached by the knowledgeable staff at the bank who can help the customer with anything from an application to using their mobile application.

A better business banking experience

Like most communities in the United States, Mendocino County has observed the economic impacts over the last two decades. While many small businesses went under in 2008 and another wave with the 2020 global pandemic, it’s now more important than ever that small businesses have the financial support they need. “The small businesses we serve today want it all. I recently onboarded a new business customer who had never banked with us before and needed online banking, a debit card, the ability to accept credit cards, and a business account” said Sharla Reed, vice president of electronic bank at Savings Bank of Mendocino. The ability to support all of the services needed from these growing businesses has been able to differentiate Savings Bank of Mendocino County from the competition.

Savings Bank partners with Apiture to offer their small business customers a variety of services including cash management, business bill pay, positive pay, wires, mobile business banking, and more.

These services are crucial for Savings Bank as a number of Bank of America branches recently closed in the Mendocino region, forcing former Bank of America customers to look for an alternative. “These customers came to us and realized that they could have access to all the same digital services they had become accustomed to at the larger banks, but still receive the personal touch that we as a community bank can offer.”

Digital reliability

Savings Bank of Mendocino County has been a customer of the Apiture Xpress product for over 15 years. The bank has stayed with the product over the years because of the consistent upgrades to the platform. “A lot has changed over the last fifteen years,” Sharla said, “but Apiture has always taken our recommendations and requests for new services to the platform, while also continuing to expand the product functionality over time.”

Having a reliable and innovative online banking platform is important to the customer experience at Savings Bank. “Besides opening an account or taking a loan, our online and mobile channels are the most important services we provide. It’s something that people depend upon, and they want to know that it’s safe and secure. So, it’s critical that they can trust us to provide that experience and that we can trust Apiture to continue to deliver it.”

A reliable and safe digital platform starts with the tools customers need to stay secure. Savings Bank utilizes Apiture’s Positive Pay solution to better serve their customers who have experienced fraud. Sharla stated that the Positive Pay function significantly reduces time that the bank’s customer support department has to spend on fraud cases while providing even better support for the customer at hand. 

At the end of the day, even as Savings Bank of Mendocino County has been pleased with the online and mobile experiences provided by Apiture, Sharla stated that what is most important is knowing that they have a reliable support team when they need it.

“It is also just knowing that I can make a phone call to Apiture and get an answer from the team right away. Even if they can’t fix my problem on the spot, the team is always willing to provide more details or provide me with updates as they look into it.”