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China Merchants Bank App 9.0 Launched: When a Ten-year-old App Talks About “New Infrastructure” and “Killer”


You open the bank app to check the bill, there is a sum of money paid to “Beijing Sankuai Online Technology Co., Ltd.”, within three seconds, can you recall what it was?

However, in version 9.0 of the China Merchants Bank App, this expenditure will be directly marked as “Meituan Takeaway”.

This detail may seem inconspicuous, but it requires machine learning and massive data cleaning, with the help of powerful data middle-office capabilities, to systematically translate the original counterparty in the transaction message, and tell the user in the form of “speaking people”. Where every penny goes.

On December 3, 2020, the China Merchants Bank App 9.0 was officially launched. The optimization of the income and expenditure account book is only a small part of the many upgrade details of the App. Starting from 2017, the China Merchants Bank App has guaranteed a major version update every year. During the iteration of the app from version 8.0 to version 9.0, China Merchants Bank completed more than 1,800 demand points, the most in any version over the years.

If you want to test the financial technology quality of a bank, there are not many channels that are more intuitive and profound than the app.

It is an excellent window position. How the bank views technology, users, and itself, from the user experience of a button to the development strategy of the entire bank in the next few years, can all be seen in the App.

When the ceiling of traffic growth is imminent, when the number of users who have accumulated online App has exceeded 100 million, when the epidemic directly brings the ultimate test of zero traffic to the bank, China Merchants Bank App 9.0 is the “King of Retail” in 2020. Under a special time node, the answer sheet of the big test was handed in as scheduled. Thousands of functional requirements and iterative details are hiding the “internal strength” of China Merchants Bank’s retail finance 3.0 transformation.


App new infrastructure: “10+N” digital middle platform

 and the top ten technology ecology

An app is like a free-floating iceberg. It is easier for users to perceive functions, services, interfaces, and experiences. In fact, this part is only about 10% of the surface of the water. How to easily support the construction of a digital middle platform and a technology ecosystem under the surface of the water? The secret of China Merchants Bank’s “internal strength” lies in the realization of high-efficiency and high-concurrency scenario-based operation with hundreds of millions of users.

Among the more than 1,800 demand points, the “10+N” digital middle-office construction occupies a considerable proportion. China Merchants Bank defines this as the “new infrastructure” of the China Merchants Bank App, moving towards the four major areas of digitization, intelligence, platformization and intensification. direction to grow.

A more comprehensive technology ecosystem is also formed, forming ten branches of wealth, life, operation, content, audio and video, openness, security, AIOps, data and infrastructure ecology.

The revenue and expenditure account book upgrade mentioned at the beginning is inseparable from the maturity of the data ecology.

A large institution like a bank has an extremely complex structure, as well as cross-department and multi-team collaboration. With the accumulation of massive data, it is like a dilapidated building that has been in disrepair. It needs timely and continuous governance to sort out the dead knots in the huge system one by one.

The R&D team told that China Merchants Bank has always had a dedicated data team and data lake. This year, it will pay more attention to the construction of the data ecology and form a strong data middle-office capability, so as to truly release the intrinsic value of data.

The IT department provides scenario-based and efficient data services for data collection, cleaning, connection, computing, and storage across business fields through unified data model conversion and label extraction, which not only presents the meaning of each data item more clearly from the user’s perspective, It also provides decision-making basis for product personnel, and continuously conducts product governance through a data-driven closed-loop to improve every experience detail.

In terms of development, operation and maintenance, Lei has reported that when the China Merchants Bank App 7.0 was launched, the R&D team had turned the banking system into a micro-service architecture, and on this basis realized the DevOps transformation of the internal R&D process.

App 9.0 further transforms to AIOps, completes an efficient development operation and maintenance system with full life cycle coverage, digital drive, and intelligent assistance, and supports large-scale, parallel, and high-quality agile delivery.

China Merchants Bank revealed that since the establishment of the AIOps ecosystem, the project delivery efficiency has increased by 50%, the maturity of continuous integration has increased by 4 times, the automation coverage has reached 100%, the system availability has reached 99.99%, and the troubleshooting time has been shortened by 91.67%.

In terms of customer acquisition and operation, China Merchants Bank has built a full-link digital middle-office including the Rubik’s Cube event operation platform and the red envelope platform. The operation and content ecology continue to empower business and product innovation.

Lei learned that in terms of operation alone, 11 middle-offices have realized self-service operations, supporting the automatic generation of marketing materials for an average of more than 100,000 times a month. Taking the Mofang event operation platform as an example, the head office and branch can quickly configure and launch an event within 5 minutes, and reach target users through the China Merchants Bank App. From January to November 2020, China Merchants Bank carried out more than 5,000 online activities and issued more than 200 million rights to users.

At the moment when the epidemic has spawned a wave of live broadcasts, China Merchants Bank has even quickly integrated nearly 100 AI atomization capabilities in the audio and video ecosystem. The five major audio and video service platforms have presented more than 1,200 live broadcasts.

The live broadcast of the China Merchants Bank App 9.0 conference earlier this month was a ready-made military parade of the app’s audio and video capabilities: as of the end of the live broadcast at 21:20 on December 3, the live broadcast had accumulated 3,435,700 views, and data such as likes and interactions set a new record for the app. In-device live broadcast records, and the app runs completely during the live broadcast, smoothly carrying the concurrent traffic of millions of users.

The app directly hosts the live broadcast of the conference

The chief product manager of the China Merchants Bank App said that these middle-office capabilities have built a new ecosystem of digital operations for China Merchants Bank, which in turn has prompted them to continue to grow and evolve on the road of digital transformation.


App Eukaryote: Wealth Management “Ace”

online reproduction of abilities

Looking back at the updates of previous generations of major versions, the construction of an open ecosystem, and the cultivation of users in the middle and outer rings and non-financial scenarios are a major feature of the App; and in version 9.0 of the App, China Merchants Bank emphasized the use of financial technology to reshape wealth. The whole journey of management service, through long-term and intelligent companionship, helps users achieve steady growth of wealth.

Wealth management can be said to be the absolute trump card of China Merchants Bank. Strong wealth management capabilities and service quality have also enabled China Merchants Bank to firmly hold the crown of the “King of Retail”.

However, wealth management is also the most complex financial service. The investment needs and actual conditions of customers are ever-changing. From the perspective of data, the decision-making link of customers is relatively long and the purchase path is more complicated. This more centralized offline service, how to reach more than 100 million customers online has become a major focus of China Merchants Bank’s work this year.

The black technology unlocked in version 9.0 this time – “same screen commentary”, is to fully reproduce the offline advisory wealth management professional service capabilities of China Merchants Bank online through functions such as text, graphics, and voice calls.

When encountering any problems in the financial management process, users can connect with the account manager with one click, respond in seconds to the needs, and conduct one-to-one online real-time on-screen demonstrations and explanations by consultants.

In China Merchants Bank’s view, wealth management is not only a one-way flow of user funds, but a two-way interaction between users and banks, especially when users encounter confusion, how to interact in a timely manner will test the strength and sincerity of the bank. Emphasizing the replacement rate of artificial intelligence by AI, it is better to use technology to implement the company of account managers in a more efficient, three-dimensional and comprehensive manner.

China Merchants Bank further revealed that App 9.0’s full-journey “Wealth Accompanying” service, through 197 demand preferences and 20 core fields, provides users with comprehensive, objective, in-depth content information and personalized reminders and other accompanying content to help customers. Understand product performance, market dynamics and investment opportunities; at the same time, a complete data review mechanism has been established to monitor the overall effect of accompanying content.

Version 9.0 has also made more capability integrations to give full play to the huge offline outlet group and the energy of customer managers. For example, the App will provide customer managers with financial data for decision-making reference, and it can also be easily and quickly on the financial planner platform. Create investment portfolios, generate transaction orders with one click, break through channel restrictions in the form of QR codes or links, reach more customers, simplify marketing steps, and enhance interactive effects.

The relevant person in charge of China Merchants Bank said that since the beginning of this year, China Merchants Bank has focused on strengthening the online service capacity building of customer managers. So far, the transaction amount of customer managers pushing orders to users through the China Merchants Bank App has increased by more than 300% year-on-year.


“Intensive Cultivation” under 100 million users

Since its launch in 2010, the China Merchants Bank App has gone through ten years, and has grown from a single online transaction tool to a wealth master account for 100 million people. Especially in the past three years, the App has carried the transformation of China Merchants Bank Retail 3.0. important task.

The route of this transformation and evolution is clearly visible: financial services use apps as the carrier, break through the limitations of time and place, migrate to the Internet, first expand outreach to fully acquire customers, fully open up, build a high-frequency app ecosystem, and then develop customers and improve retention. Provide customers with comprehensive one-stop convenient financial services.

Whether from the perspective of assets or from the perspective of scenarios, China Merchants Bank is trying to build a concentric circle covering strong financial correlation to pan-financial and non-financial to deepen user operations.

The relevant person in charge of China Merchants Bank retail said that in the past few years, China Merchants Bank has set the MAU (monthly active users) North Star strategy to replace heavy transaction customers with light interaction users, and active users have formed a platform-style scale and traffic on the App. Explosive growth has been achieved, the number of App users and the number of transactions have reached two new levels, and the App has also achieved the primary goals of “external traffic” and “built-in platform”.

The emphasis on App and MAU has enabled China Merchants Bank to gain a lot in the battlefield of retail finance: the 2020 interim report shows that the cumulative number of users of China Merchants Bank’s App reached 129 million, which was 2.31 times that at the end of 2017; 2.14 times at the end of the year.

From the perspective of AUM (total assets under management of retail customers), the core indicator of a bank’s retail financial competitiveness, at the end of the third quarter of 2020, China Merchants Bank’s AUM balance was 8.63 trillion yuan, an increase of 15.17% over the end of the previous year, and a single-quarter increment of 430 billion yuan .

Now facing China Merchants Bank, there are billion-level customer acquisition and business strategy issues. The App has also begun to put “traffic management” and “value creation” in a more prominent position, and more consideration is given to the way and experience of interacting with customers. Rising to a more “intensive and meticulous” refined operation, the non-linear growth of customer acquisition brought by MAU operation will drive the steady growth of AUM, and the qualitative change period of retail 3.0 transformation has officially begun.

The next decade will be an era of turbulent digital transformation, an era in which banking services are infinitely approaching “ubiquitous”, and China Merchants Bank App 9.0 is exactly what China Merchants Bank has been refining in digital thinking and financial technology. After that, the strongest response to this era.