One of the things that sets Starling apart from other banks is our Marketplace, the in-app space where customers can connect their Starling account to third-party products. These connections, known as ‘integrations’, exchange data with other software products in real time through APIs, the technology that enables software products to communicate.
The result is that customers can benefit from additional features in their Starling account, such as digital receipts from Flux or instant notifications transferred from your Starling account to Slack. Each integration is designed to make it easier for you to manage your money, wherever you are.
When the Starling Marketplace launched in 2017, it was the first API-based Marketplace among UK banks. For its third anniversary, we reflect on how the Marketplace has evolved and explore our integrations, each built with customer wants and needs at their core.
From a single integration to a bustling Marketplace
We have come a long way since our first integration with digital receipts provider Flux in September 2017. Today, we offer 27 integrations, covering everything from phone insurance to online accounting software.
In the last three years, it’s not just the range of services that’s increased. We’ve also extended our integrations to other types of Starling accounts. The Starling Business Marketplace is growing fast.
Our current focus is providing a new level of detail within our integrations, so that you can do even more with your banking data. For example, when we launched pension provider PensionBee in 2018, we designed a simple integration that allowed you to see your pension balance from within the Starling app. It’s an integration that thousands of Starling customers use to track their pension pot value.
In 2019, we took the data exchange a few steps further. For example, if you pay your rent from your Starling account, you can sign up to CreditLadder who will record these payments and use them to potentially boost your credit score. This sophisticated integration was designed with ‘generation rent’ in mind, helping renters build a credit score that could make securing a mortgage easier if and when they choose to buy a property.
More recently, in 2020, we launched an integration with communications platform Slack. Through the Marketplace, you can arrange for real-time notifications from your Starling business account to show up in a Slack channel. It keeps your team up to date, wherever they are - working from home or in the office.
Your feedback makes it clear that the integrations you value most are the ones that use the real-time data connection to provide extra benefits, such as more information in your Starling app, or less need to open multiple apps. That’s why we’re working on ways to make current integrations even slicker and more detailed, as well as continuing to add new integrations.
A fresh look for your connected services
In a recent update of the Starling app, we gave the Marketplace a fresh lick of paint. Similar to the new layout of Spaces, where you can set money aside as savings, each connected service now has its own clickable tile. This includes both in-app Marketplace services and apps you’ve connected outside of Starling, such as budgeting app Emma or discounts and loyalty app Yoyo Wallet. The new design allows you to see all your connected services from one screen.
When you click on an individual tile, key insights about your account with that provider will be shown. If you’re a freelancer using UnderPinned for project management, you’ll be able to see the number of invoices you need to send out. Or if you’ve got home insurance with Churchill, you’ll be able to keep track of your policy dates.