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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.

Starling marketplace interface

Clickable tiles expand to display insights

We’ve also included links so that you can find out more about a service from their own website or app. And we’ve included an option to stop sharing your data with that provider. Your data belongs to you - no one else - and it’s up to you who you share it with. At Starling, we want you to be in control of your own data at all times.

The new layout also allows you to re-order your connected services in whatever order you prefer. Want to keep a close eye on your mortgage status with Molo Finance? Now you can pull Molo to the top of the list. Lost track of when your phone insurance is next due? Shuffle your integrations so that so-sure comes first.

Re-order your connected services as you choose

Whether you’re a Marketplace newbie, or you’re an old hand, these integrations are here to help you keep track of your money directly from the Starling app. Say goodbye to juggling lots of different apps.

2020: Still a Marketplace like no other

When we opened our Marketplace in 2017, we knew that it would become a force for good for our customers. Three years on, we’re still driving forward to deliver technology that truly benefits our customers.

Marketplace has also picked up a few awards along the way. In 2018, we won Open Banking Initiative of the Year, at the Payment Awards. In 2019, we received our second award for the Marketplace, with Best Open Banking Strategy of the Year, at the Retail Banker Awards. 

At Starling, we’ve created a Marketplace that offers a frictionless, flexible and fair choice of services. Banking should be frictionless. When we can surf seamlessly from an email inbox to social media to a messaging app, why should going from your banking app to other services be any different?

Banking should be flexible. If no two businesses are the same, why should you be restricted on the tools you can link to your bank account? Whether you prefer to do your accounting with QuickBooks, Xero or FreeAgent you can benefit from instant transaction syncing from your Starling app, meaning that you’ll never need to upload a statement again.

Banking should be fair. When you’re searching for innovative services to save you time or money, why should you pay more if you find them through the Starling Marketplace? Our customers will never pay more for connecting to a service through our Marketplace - it’s what we call the Starling Promise.

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