When you’re selecting a bank, bigger isn’t always better. Too often, we settle for the most well-known brand or slickest advertising without putting real thought into why we are choosing one bank over another.
Community banks aren’t just smaller versions of large financial institutions. They’re locally owned and operated small businesses with a vested interest in serving your community and helping it succeed. And that’s just one of the reasons why a community bank might be right for you.
The Unique Benefits of a Community Bank
If you’ve never had an account at a community bank, you may not be familiar with the features and services that make these financial institutions so unique.
Let’s explore five ways community banks stand out from the national chains:
Large national banks funnel money up the ladder to headquarters and executive boards that live outside of your local community. But a community bank keeps this money local, using earnings to support community development projects and provide resources to local organizations.
Customer service is an important part of the banking experience. A local customer service representative is well positioned to help you with questions or requests quickly and spare you the long wait time a national customer service hotline often entails.
Community banks value the relationships they build with individual customers. When you’re more than an account number, banks can weigh customer reputation and history more heavily in certain approval decisions. Many community banks even develop specific products and services to meet the needs they identify among their customers.
Investment in Growth
Because community banks are located, staffed, and managed in your local community, they are committed to serving that community and helping it succeed. Many community banks return a share of their profits to the community in the form of community service, educational support, and assistance to charitable and nonprofit organizations.
Just like national banks, your local bank offers a wide range of electronic banking services, including mobile and online banking, mobile check deposit, online bill pay, and other convenient tools that today’s banking customers expect.
If it’s been a while since you looked into a community bank, it’s worth checking out what today’s local banks have to offer. Most community banks have overhauled their banking services in recent years, adopting new technologies that erase the gap between small and large banks.
Community Banks Create a Positive Impact
Large national and corporate banks extend their business interests far beyond your community. Because the leaders of these banks aren't local, they aren’t invested in your community’s success. They’re more focused on making sure the branches in your area turn a profit and generate value for the larger institution.
Your local bank, on the other hand, is a true member of the community and understands that we’re all in this together. Keeping money local provides wealth-building opportunities and financial incentives for the residents, which in turn helps the bank succeed so they can provide additional financial services.
For example, small businesses are the backbone of every community. As a financial institution rooted in your community, your local bank has a vested interest in providing banking services that support local business owners, such as small business loans and business checking accounts.
The larger a local bank’s customer base grows, the more capital it has to reinject into the community through loans and incentives for local businesses. Even if you aren’t a small business owner yourself, community banks that invest in local businesses strengthen your local economy, which improves your own financial health.
How First State Community Bank Makes a Difference in Missouri
First State Community Bank laid down roots in Missouri in 1954. Over the past six decades, our business has grown, but our commitment to helping our communities thrive has never wavered.
We demonstrate this commitment through service projects that help our entire community prosper. One of these initiatives is our annual Impact Month when our employees provide hands-on help that ranges from beautifying parks to volunteering at local charities.
First State Community Bank offers financial and volunteer support for a number of local events and initiatives, including the FSCB Junior Savers program, local blood donation drives, and family-friendly events throughout the calendar year. We also invite community members to participate in these volunteer and charitable programs, strengthening community ties through our service.
Welcome to the Community!
Community banks may not always have the national footprint of large banks, but your local financial institutions make unique social and economic contributions that benefit individual customers and our community as a whole.
Community banks are committed to their roots in your local area, which means you can invest in a long-term relationship with confidence, knowing you can count on exceptional banking services for years to come.
If you would like to learn more about how a community bank can benefit you as a customer and your community, download our free guide, Why You Should Switch to a Community Bank.