You are a new PM at Google Pay. Design a feature for budgeting
1. Define the metrics and why you'll be using it.

2. What are some risks/problems you might run into?

 3. Provide an order/ranking for delivery of different aspects of the product. Make sure to explain the reason.

BONUS: Gamifying budgeting.
0 votes
460 views
1. Define the metrics and why you'll be using it.

2. What are some risks/problems you might run into?

 3. Provide an order/ranking for delivery of different aspects of the product. Make sure to explain the reason.

BONUS: Gamifying budgeting.
in Product Improvement by (22 points) | 460 views

2 Answers

+1 vote
For a product like Google pay that has likely a success metric of Transaction volume or number of transactions or amount per transaction, budgeting features may be counter-intuitive because the feature will likely impact the core metrics. But, Google usually takes a noble approach in its products. With that, I am thinking that it wants to provide a user with deeper insights into spent and budget for personal events. So, with this Google pay is likely improving the "engagement" with the app. Engagement here is defined as opening the app. Given the nature of the product, it is not a daily usage product but likely a weekly or monthly usage product. So, the success metric is an increase in WAU or MAU. By engaging more with the app, users will likely use Google Pay more paying for services (increase in transaction volume). The trade-off is that it can reduce the transaction volume if users get more conscious of spending. A/B test is the way to go.

Below are some customer needs:

1. As someone who wants to control my spending, I would like to see where I am spending the most (restaurants, subscriptions..)

2. As someone who wants to control my spending, I would like to be informed when my next subscriptions are going to get charged

3. As someone who wants to budget for some personal event (wedding, house purchase), I want to see how much is my spent overall and how will it take to save up the money for the personal event

4. As someone who wants needs social validation I would like to see how much I spend compared to other users like myself (demographics, net worth, goals..)

Prioritization:

Prioritize the use cases based on constraints - i) dev resources ii) value of the feature that will drive the metric for success iii) confidence level in the feature. Based on the value I feel like 3) is the best use case. 1) is something that users can get from credit cards. 2) is a smaller use as not everyone has subscription services 4) I am ranking personal motivation for budgeting than social validation.

The use case I going to prioritize is users setting a target for budget and achieve their budget goals by analyzing the spent and income.
by (34 points)
+1 vote

 

Clarifying questions

  • By Google Pay, we mean Google Pay in India, the UPI-based payments app and not the US-based payments app, correct? Yes.
  • By budgeting, we mean monthly expense budgets for specific categories and not one-off cases like budgeting for an event, etc. correct? Yes.
  • Google Pay has two kinds of users - end users and merchants. Who are we focused on? End users.
  • What's the business goal? To improve user experience, make Google Pay a daily habit product so that people associate finance or money with Google Pay, and also to get a fair idea on how much an individual spends on each category (but then Google already has a lot of this info via Gmail, etc.)

Identifying users

Primary target audience is likely to be young Indians with significant disposable incomes for whom the need for a budgeting tool is quite high. These Indians maybe single or married (with or without kids). They're likely to be in Tier 1 or 2 cities with the propensity to use digital payment methods.

User goals

  • I want to be financially disciplined
  • I want to save money for the future
  • I want to know where my money is being spent
  • I want to be rewarded for being financially disciplined

Jobs to be done

  • Set monthly budgets per category (including one time expenses)
  • Pay bills and other recurring liabilities on time
  • Track expenses daily
  • Save a certain amount every month
  • Loan money to and reclaimed loaned money from friends
  • Split expenses with a friend or roommates
  • (For couples) Know what partner is spending on
  • (For couples) Save together for big goals (home, kids' education, etc.)

User journey

  • Set a budget for each item
  • Pay monthly bills and recurring liabilities
  • Spend money
    • Track expense
  • Save money
  • Do weekly and monthly audits of expenses

Current solutions

  • Budgeting apps
  • Expense tracker apps
  • Excel sheets
  • Physical notebooks

Pain points

  • Expense trackers don't allow you set category-specific budgets
  • Excel sheets are hard to fill and the discipline is difficult to instil
  • Cash expenses are difficult to track
  • Usually forget how much money is in each mode (bank a/c, cash, wallets, etc.)

 

 

Must solve

  • Monthly budget setup
  • Know balances in bank, wallet, etc.
  • Track cash expenses
  • Track all expenses

Could innovate

  • Being financially disciplined
  • Saving money
  • Know what partner is spending

Ignore

  • Loan or claim money
  • Split expenses with friends

Solutions

Help me budget everything

  • AI + Human input based budget assistant that pulls in my previous spends, categorizes them, suggests how much I set as a budget for each category.
  • Automatically pull in my repeat spends like rent, bill payments, etc. and account that into monthly spending.
  • Allow me to set one-time expenses that I can budget for (specific events, trips, etc.)

Track all my household expenses

  • Allow me to setup a Family within Google Pay where all our expenses and incomes are collectively tracked under one ambit.
  • SMS based inflow / outflow tracker for tracking digital spends that Google tags automatically or I tag with a couple of taps.
  • Google Assistant integration for easily adding cash payments

Reward me for being financially disciplined

  • Gamify the process of budgeting and staying within budget with Streaks and Anonymous Leaderboards (based on age group, salary, city, etc.)
  • Collect points for every rupee kept under budget that can be redeemed somehow (quicker loan processing, line of credit, etc.)

Help me save money for the future

  • Monthly saver that asks me what I want to save for (an Eurotrip, end of year vacation, a home, etc.), asks me for a time horizon (3mo, 9mo, 10y), and sets a goal chunked down to how much I need to save this month.
  • Helps me select the right financial products to invest in and facilitates the transaction right within Google Pay depending on my time horizon, risk appetite, etc.

Wrap-up

The feature we propose has four components - a smart budgeting tool that uses AI to help setup budgets at the beginning of every month, an expense tracker that ensures I'm staying within budget by automatically tracking whatever I spend on my card (and allowing me to add details about whatever I spend as cash, via Assistant or within the app), a gamified system that lets me win points when I'm financially disciplined, and has an automated piggy bank that saves money for different goals on my behalf.

Metrics

The metrics I'd track on this are:

 

 

  • Number of people who setup budgets every month
  • Number of people who check their leaderboards every week
  • Number of people whose financial discipline improves over time
by (32 points)
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