How can SMEs save 200 hours a year with access to innovative financial solutions

SMEs are the lifeblood of our economy. However, their limited access to financial services has challenged their growth and survival. From cash flow insights to fairer lending and credit, are the financial solutions most needed by SMEs finally becoming more accessible?

SMEs represent over 90 per cent of the business population. Without them powering our economy, innovation would retrograde, less money would flow into all levels of society, and the future of work would look entirely different. In the UK alone, SMEs account for around half of commercial banking revenue. So why are they still being underserved and undervalued by their own banks?

It’s no secret that SMEs have had a rocky relationship with financial institutions. Traditionally made to rely on traditional sources such as banks for funding, their growth has been challenged by strict credit history and cash flow criteria, risk of rejection and sky-high interest rates. Combined with tedious credit applications, lengthy processing times and back-and-forth communication, it all mounts up to be an unnecessary headache.

Living in a data-driven world, we expect financial products and services to be personalised to our needs. SMEs are no exception. The dynamic marketplace they operate in means no day, or challenge, is the same. Whether it’s the contract terms or the fees, banks have never designed their products and services to support SMEs.

The rise of SME-centric financial services

This empty white space created by financial institutions has ultimately paved the way for fintechs to revolutionise SME financial services.

SMEs spend 24 hours on average researching and applying for a loan, nearly 20 hours a week manually calculating cash flow, and over 137 million hours a year sending payments online. These precious hours could be better spent elsewhere if only they had the right financial solutions available to them.

A surge in fintech innovation has finally made accessing the right solution possible, enabling SMEs to obtain a credit decision in minutes, simplify bookkeeping, and send bulk payments in a single transaction.

  • Crezco, a complete B2B payment solution, makes direct bank transfers as convenient as card payments, saving time and money for SMEs.
  • Kashflow, an accounting software platform, transforms how SMEs manage their cash flow with real-time insights and frictionless end-to-end bookkeeping.
  • Comma, a bulk payments provider, enables SMEs to pay multiple recipients at once from their existing business bank account, reducing the time spent processing payments by 77%

Open banking-powered financial services

Before open banking came into existence, there was only one way for SMEs to manage their finances. Now, there’s a wealth of financial solutions to automate manual workflows such as handling invoices, managing payroll, reconciling bank statements and many other aspects of daily financial management.

Although access to credit remains the biggest challenge for SMEs, this is starting to change as fintechs continue to unlock new lending solutions. By leveraging open banking data, lenders can access an enhanced aggregated view of an SME’s bank accounts to reflect their true financial health. For SMEs, this increases their likelihood of acceptance.

Cash flow management is a task that can easily fall down the priority list, risking the danger of running into cash flow problems. Open banking-powered solutions ensure that SMEs stay on top of their cash flow with real-time visibility across all accounts in one place, allowing them to anticipate cash gaps and estimate future sales and expenses.

Insurance is another vertical embedding the power of open banking. Considering SMEs account for 60% of commercial insurance premiums, it would be a missed opportunity for the industry not to meet demand. Adopting open banking makes the application quicker for SMEs, and enables insurance companies to provide a hyper-personalised offering.

The future of financial services for SMEs

It’s clear that SMEs have an appetite for better financial services, and the growing infrastructure is powering innovation. It raises the question: how will open banking shape the future of financial services for SMEs?

As banks continue to adopt end-to-end digital technology that connects with fintechs, they will collectively create a fairer financial future for every business. There’s no doubt the future of financial services is personalised, powered by open APIs and data-driven technology.

With around 160,000 new SME users adopting open banking tools each month, the financial landscape is only getting better for these once underserved businesses.


Image description
Financial services


9th March 2023

4 min read

Yapily and Zilch strike groundbreaking partnership to bring affordable credit solutions to millions

We’ve agreed a groundbreaking partnership with payments technology company Zilch that will provide millions of people with better access to 0% interest swift repayment credit.

Image description
Financial services


18th January 2023

5 min read

Why now is the time to consider open banking

As we navigate a challenging economy, it’s well worth exploring how open banking can help businesses save money, improve user experience, and expand to new markets.

Image description
Financial services


9th January 2023

3 min read

Is open banking safe?

Here, we demystify open banking security and answer the most critical question: is my financial data safe from prying eyes?

Build personalised financial experiences for your customers with Yapily. One platform. Limitless possibilities.

Get In Touch