Becoming a Customer Ally: Reinventing small-business relationships

A full-service banking provider headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, wanted to understand the needs of small-business owners and deliver a banking experience designed just for them.


Entrepreneurs and small business owners are responsible for managing the company financials, yet many are not formally trained for it. This would be less problematic if a small business banking solution was designed for their unique needs. Entrepreneurs need banking capabilities beyond those offered to individual customers, but the suites designed for large corporations are overkill. This bank saw the opportunity to improve how they engaged with small-business owners and partnered with ICC to help reimagine and redesign the banking experience.


ICC partnered with the bank to design a small-business portal most suited to the entrepreneurs’ daily needs.The team began with primary qualitative research, interviewing thirty-two small-business owners. The team designed dashboard concepts based on the research data and shared those with a second group of entrepreneurs. This iterative approach allows for continuous improvement and resulted in a small-business banking solution that was thoroughly vetted by the customers themselves. The solution included the full-capability web concept, an outline for a minimally viable product, and recommended data platform.


The bank's small-business banking portal represents a massively compelling service to a vital segment of the bank’s customers. With it, the bank is extending its relationship with this community. The solution provides:

  • Differentiation to attract new customers and maintain revenue streams with existing ones 
  • At-a-glance information designed specifically for small-business owners
  • Concise, mobile-optimized dashboard 

The platform is ripe for additional revenue generation as well. While the portal is offered to banking clients free of charge, opportunities to profit from value-added services, à-la-carte programs, or tiered programs are plentiful.