The bank branch experience: creating brand awareness (not only) with the right furnishing

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Online banking has gained massively in importance in recent years. While in 2007 only 30 percent of Austrians used the internet for online banking, by 2022 this figure had already risen to 73 percent (1) - this is almost three quarters of the population. It is easy to think that bank branches are fading into the background as a tool for customer acquisition and retention. However, exactly the opposite is true: in view of the competitive situation, it is more important than ever to make the bank visit a unique and incomparable experience for customers.

Your bank branch as a world of experience: What matters when setting up your branch

The integration of corporate identity (CI) into branch design is an essential factor in increasing the recognition value of a brand. Not only the thoughtful placement of logo or brand colours is important here. The furnishings are also a key tool for communicating the brand identity as well as the values a bank stands for.

Transporting values with furniture and design elements
Example: If a bank advertises transparency and openness, this should also be reflected in the furnishing style - with modern furniture and an overall open and bright appearance. Large windows or glass walls to separate individual offices and consulting rooms support the statement.
Design elements can have a conscious and unconscious effect on clients. Well-tended green plants are often consciously perceived and can create a positive association ("The staff take good care of me here!"). Other elements, however, have a much more subtle effect. For example, indirect lighting with the brand colour makes the brand omnipresent without being obtrusive. Moreover, indirect lighting usually creates a more pleasant atmosphere than direct lighting.

ATMs & cash recyclers also convey the brand
ATM housings and user interfaces** on cash dispensers, cash recyclers and other machines that are individually tailored to the bank additionally support the brand experience of customers. Intuitive and barrier-free operability** also plays a major role here: if this is provided - in combination with good branding - the bank and the associated brand are remembered positively.
Of course, KEBA cash recyclers and non-cash terminals can be individually adapted to the CI of a bank. This results in a uniform and consistent overall image for customers - with an inestimably high value for the brand.

An open and bright appearance has an inviting effect on customers.

Creating a banking experience for different target groups

It is also important for banks to know their own target groups and their wishes and needs. A single concept for all does not work. It has to be adapted to specific requirements. For a better understanding, we would like to give three examples of different target groups - and how the banking experience can be optimally designed for them.

Accessibility for all people
In terms of accessibility, not only access to bank branches, but also to counters or operating elements at ATMs must be designed to be barrier-free. Wheelchair users, elderly or infirm people, people with disabilities: All of them must not be restricted in carrying out their banking transactions on site, but must be supported in the best possible way. We have summarised further ways to make a bank branch barrier-free for you in an earlier blog post.

Areas for families with children
Financing or investment consultations are time-consuming and childcare is not always available for young families. For this reason, it makes sense to set up a small area for children in the bank branch: A child-friendly table and suitable chairs, colouring books, crayons and books can pass the time for the little ones while their parents take advantage of an advisory meeting. However, one thing is very important here: the quality! Dirty reading books, broken crayons or completely scribbled colouring books do not represent a bank's brand or the values it stands for. The children's play corner should always be clean and tidy.

Brand experience for young people & young professionals
If children have positive memories of their visits to the bank with their parents, they are likely to become customers themselves as young people or when they start their careers. Special offers and campaigns for young people are further important factors for success: excursions organised by the bank, birthday presents or bonuses can convey a positive brand experience to children. The advisors themselves are also an important aspect here: they should be able to empathise well with the young target group and know their needs.

Cash recyclers must also be easily accessible with pushchairs.

Creating Brand Awareness - Inspiring Customers

One thing must not be forgotten in all this talk about brand awareness, CI or brand values: It is above all the small things that customers remember positively. The friendly greeting by the bank employee when entering the branch, the nice "How are you today?" of the bank employee at the counter. With their behaviour and appearance, the employees in a branch convey the values of a bank just as much. In combination with appealing furnishings and well thought-out design, an atmosphere is created that is positively remembered and ensures an incomparable banking experience.

Source: (1), [09.02.2023].

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Julia Werger Team Administration Officer +43 732 7090 27705 [email protected]
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