How to Build a Fintech App
Updated 14 Feb 2023
Global digitalization has covered almost all industries, including fintech. In 2020, the fintech market was valued at $127 billion. According to the Business Research Company, it'll reach $ 309,98 billion by 2022, with a CAGR of 24.8%.
Fintech is an industry that covers all financial technologies. Despite its complexity, fintech is gaining popularity, replacing traditional e-commerce, payments, banking, and wealth management, allowing business owners and professional accountants to control their finances easily.
If you are reading these lines, you may be thinking about fintech app creation (or how to create DeFi app, for example). From this article, you'll find out what fintech is, what are the types of fintech apps and their main features, and understand how to create a fintech app.
Types of FinTech apps
Fintech is a compilation of technologies and financial sectors like blockchain and banking platforms, or budgeting apps. With more expansion in recent years, this sector makes the business more customer-oriented.
If you want your team or the IT company you've chosen for development to understand your idea, you need to determine the value of your product to consumers.
Let's find out what types of fintech apps are and take a look at the most popular ones.
This type of app is suitable for the insurance industry to speed up claims processing, policy administration, and for reducing the insurance likelihood of fraud. Besides, it may be as basic an insurance website as a complex CRM.
Insurance apps should have such main features as a payment processing, file a claim, quotes, policies details and ability to search for policies by selected parameters.
If you want to create insurance app, check out the good examples:
- Geico Mobile. It's one of the best auto insurance apps with such key features as digital ID cards to access insurance policies, a virtual assistant that quickly answers questions regarding the policy coverage and billing, a parking locator that helps users find parking and make a reservation in advance.
- Lemonade. This app is designed to provide policies to homeowners and renters. Its unique feature is that it takes a maximum flat fee to run a business and any over premiums get distributed between different charities during a year.
Choose such an app type if you want to start working in the stock market. This app will allow you not only to research financial assets and invest in them but also to improve your investments' efficiency.
If you decide to create an investment app, don’t forget about such the main features as currency, savings, and credit management, product comparison, real-time alerts, and client support.
Here are some ideas for investment app:
- Robinhood. Robinhood is a good solution for smooth trading. Its main advantages are quick access to the stock page, a trading quick start by the instant delivery of the first $ 1000 of any funds deposited into the account, and a channel with stories from news and investment sites, so that you can know the latest news.
- Wealthbase. Wealthbase is the best stock market games app. The app combines stock picking and social media, so you can see a feed of stocks that your friends or colleagues are choosing.
Banking apps are designed so that users can independently and quickly manage their bank accounts and carry out financial transactions.
Many traditional banks create their mobile apps, becoming more competitive. This is because all services are becoming mobile, financial transactions are carried out faster and more conveniently.
Creating a banking app, you can integrate it with payment systems like Google/Apple Pay or PayPal like the UK financial company Monese did that in its app.
Here is the example of several banking apps from the top 10 popular according to the FinTech magazine:
- Starling. The app allows customers to open an account for free and without documents quickly, manage overdrafts, savings, draw up a budget, and transfer funds to bank accounts in 38 countries safely.
- Monese. This app is specially designed for expats who have moved to the UK. You can open an account anywhere in continental Europe and the UK even if you don't have a UK address, credit history, fixed income.
Decide to build a fintech app? Find out how to create a robust and legally compliant P2P payment app.
Regtech (Regulatory Technology) is designed for companies that deal with finance to help them meet compliance with the law set by regulatory bodies. Regtech solutions help compliance departments to monitor risks, regulatory changes, transactions, reduce the number of false non-compliance alerts, and build reports.
If you want to create such an app, don’t forget to include the ability to identity and risk management, and identification of financial crime.
Here are a good regtech app examples:
- 6 clicks. This platform is designed to help automate and manage risk identification, assessment, and analysis for all stakeholders of the risk management lifecycle.
- PassFort. This platform allows automating compliance checks with the principles of KYC (Know Your Customer), AML (Anti-Money Laundering), and others. It enables you to transform CLM (Closed-Loop Marketing) processes into digital automated onboarding tasks.
Lending apps make the processing of loan requests and the interaction between the borrower and the lender more efficient and faster. It’s a good way to improve businesses for both independent digital lenders and traditional financial institutions.
Lending apps may include features like credit score, loan application form, billing, payment. You can also provide users with the ability to loan repayment right from the app.
The examples of popular lending apps are:
- Earnin. It’s the leader among fintech apps that provides low fees. This app stands out because it doesn't charge fees when you borrow money.
- PaySense. This platform provides short-term personal loans to salaries professionals within 5 hours after applying for a loan, affordable and convenient EMIs and interest rates. It provides loans even to those with a low credit rating.
Check out our actionable tips for loan app development.
Consumer finance apps don’t usually offer payment processing services. They are designed to help users plan and manage their expenses, save money, and forecast future account balances so as not to spend more than planned.
This type of apps should include such features as financial goals setting, expenses and bills tracking, investments analysis, payments categorization, fraud and identity alerts, etc.
Here are fintech apps that you can consider to understand how they work:
- Mint. It's a free app that allows users to budget, track payments and enrollments. Mint can be synchronized with various credit cards, bank accounts, and PayPal.
- Money Patrol With this app, you can oversee and manage your transactions, savings, make effective financial decisions, data about which the app provides, reveal fraudulent transactions and penalties for late payments.
Key FinTech App Development Requirements
The fintech sphere is complex enough so let's consider how and what features help you to succeed with your startup. Let's look at the requirements for fintech apps development.
Security is the most important thing in fintech application development. If users face security issues once, they'll lose confidence in your app and delete it.
Here are the main common features that may help you make your fintech app secure:
- Two-factor authentication
- Biometric security
- Registration via phone number
- Dynamic CVV2 codes
It'll be best to make your app penetration testing to ensure your system’s security. This way you'll analyze how hackers can break into your software, and think about steps to prevent it. It’s also necessary to constantly maintain, update, and check apps for security.
The fintech industry is one of the most regulated. Therefore, if you decide to create a fintech app, then you must definitely comply with the requirements of regulatory acts such as PCI-DSS, PSD2, FCA, and privacy laws like CCPA, GDPR, or PIA. Implement the security techniques at the beginning of fintech app development.
The basis for building the platform is API. As you know, APIs are used to link different software apps to each other. In the fintech industry APIs are widely used to issue commands to third-party service providers.
With the API, you can improve overall cost-effectiveness. For example, you can integrate your app with Plaid API. It’s a financial technology company which technology platform allows connecting the apps to bank accounts. So users and entrepreneurs can interact with their bank accounts, check balances and make payments.
Payment processing APIs simplify the payment and checkout processes when shopping online. You can integrate your fintech app with a payment service such as PayPal so that your customers can purchase around the world.
Building a fintech app, make a simple and user-friendly design. Fintech app users should be able to use advanced services to manage their financial transactions easily. The idea of fintech app development is to create analytical tools for collecting financial data and creating financial programs with a simple interface.
All fintech apps should have analytics and statistics that are displayed in real-time so that users and companies can easily recover their revenue.
If you want to attract more customers, make your fintech app functions simple and intelligible so that they want to stay (provide the ability to quickly view payments, choose a currency card in one click).
Banking app design example (Source - Dribbble)
The fintech segment deals with a lot of confidential data. It isn't easy to provide companies with external customer support. Consultants must be technically trained to operate under very strict safety rules and requirements.
If your app's support service isn't available 24/7, create a chatbot. This way, users can quickly find out about their finances or banks' offers. Thereby, banks will be able to unburden their support staff and engage employees in more complex issues.
Stages to Create a Fintech App
Fintech application development requires a lot of technical knowledge. To understand how to create a fintech app, look at the main steps that we've outlined for you.
Fintech app development stages
Choose your Fintech niche
Choosing a niche is a crucial step when you decide to create a fintech app. Firstly, you should analyze the target market. Then choose whether you want to create your own fintech solution, like conduct DeFi lending/borrowing platform development, etc., or improve a ready-made one (reduce clicks' number for the operation, add integration with the social network).
If you want to be competitive, it would be good to create a complex solution. There are too many simple fintech apps like budgeting apps, so you have to be unique.
Now that you’ve chosen a niche, you need to legalize your app.
Deciding on a business idea? Find out also about mobile wallet app development.
Deal with compliance
There are a large number of financial protection systems such as KYC, AML designed to track compliance. You must also comply with privacy laws (CCPA, GDPR, LGPD, PIA) to ensure that all users' financial data is protected and has limited access.
The choice of privacy law depends on the country in which users will use your app. Most countries don't yet have specialized regulatory bodies. You should consider all the requirements depending on the country where you want to use your app, be guided by the laws and standards of that country.
For example, there are no dedicated fintech regulators in the USA. If you are launching your startup here, you must comply with many state and federal laws, because no entity controls fintech.
Compliance with legal requirements is the main factor of success, so take it seriously.
Define your features
Main features depend on the fintech app type. Determine what your target audience needs. You can create a fintech app based on an existing one and think about how to make it easier.
Here are important features that any fintech app should include:
- Secure sign-in (voice and face recognition integration, fingerprint authentication)
- Custom notifications
- Budgeting and savings tracking
- Basic financial operations like money transfer, digital payments, balance checking, mobile depositing
- Card number and QR code scanning
- Virtual assistant and AI-powered chatbots
- Unconventional financial service (buying tickets, giving money to charity)
If you haven't dealt with a fintech app yet, the development team you've chosen will help you define the features.
Get a team or hire a software service provider
Many companies outsource development because it saves time and money compared to hiring your own development team.
The number of project team members depends on timing, technology, and project size. For example, if you want to create a cross-platform fintech app for iOS and Android, you need to hire Flutter developers. The development process will take a little longer, but you'll create an app for 2 platforms at once.
Here are the specialists are usually part of the fintech app development team:
- Back-end developer
- Front-end developer
- Business analyst
- Project manager
- Product manager
- QA specialist
If you choose a financial software development company, pay attention to the company's experience, hourly wages, and specialists' training level. The professional team will always offer you to create a project technical specification that will give both you and the development team clear project vision.
Create a compelling UX/UI design
Design plays an important role in fintech app development right after security. Your fintech app should be simple and easy to use throughout the entire process of interacting with it.
For example, if you decide to build a banking app, don't make large forms that users need to fill out to pay bills. Also, provide users with the option not to re-enter payment details every time they need to transfer money.
Make your design recognizable so that it grabs attention at main functionality.
Develop an MVP
MVP creation is a good decision to test your idea before launching a full-fledged product. With the MVP you can test your idea without extra costs and save money on a product development. Minimum viable product includes enough features that users can try out at first and review your app.
MVP creation will allow you to easily attract investors, get feedback and minimize the risk that your idea won't pay off.
Test, improve, repeat
After launching the full-fledged app, the development process doesn't stop. You need to conduct an A/B testing stage to check customer reviews, based on which add new features or improve old ones (design, functionality).
To outperform your competitors, make sure that your app is well-adapted for users, runs smoothly and securely. The following KPI key indicators may help you with it:
- Average time to first transaction
- Number of users that complete sign-up
- Average number of days to first action
- Daily/monthly active users
- Screen with shortest and longest visit duration
- Push notification actions
- Daily app launches
- Average time to second session
- Number of unresponsive gestures (taps, swipes)
Cleveroad is a Ukrainian software development company with experience in fintech solutions development since 2011.
We've developed two fintech solutions that are under the NDA, so we'll briefly tell you about them.
The first is a fintech project for an investment company that our team of 7 members developed in 16 months. It was about developing a tool for creating PDF files with investment calculations and presentations, making AML KYC service to prevent fraud, and get clients' verification. And the last one is creating a tool for customer anonymization.
The second is a project on the modernization of the CRM system for a Canadian microfinance company. Our team of 5 members' challenges was to rewrite an outdated CRM system from scratch and provide high scalability so that the software can meet the growing needs of the business in 3 months.
FinTech project for an investment company
These are all apps of the financial sector created so that entrepreneurs, companies, banks, and ordinary users can easily compose, manage their budget.
Define your target audience (users, banks, businesses), list the main features that will satisfy their needs (fast transactions, integration with payment systems), create and test a prototype, find a development team. Also don’t forget to provide your app with the security.
First, choose the niche, secure your system with different regulatory acts (PCI-DSS, PSD2) and privacy laws (GDPR), select a development team that'll help you define the main features of your app, and think over the design. It'll be great to release the MVP to see how users will react to your product.
Alternatively, it can be P2P lending, which allows individuals to receive loans directly from others. You can provide users with the ability to free subscriptions so they can try and evaluate your app. You can also contact specific banking advisors or trading firms to advertise your fintech app.