Designing for fintech depends on gaining a deep understanding of the target customers; which means understanding the fintech persona.
A user persona is a fictional character that represents your target audience. The user persona, although fictional, is built on the data and facts that are gleaned from user interviews, surveys, and other modes of research. Creating personas helps us visualize our users as real people. It permits us to relate to their limitations, struggles, wins, and goals. This allows us to design better flows and a user experience more optimized to the specific users’ needs.
Now that we have understood why user personas are important; let us move on to understand how to build user personas.
Conduct qualitative user research
Interview various users of the product and understand through a questionnaire, their pains, limitations, and goals.
Secondary qualitative research
Conduct interviews with the people (product company’s employees) who most closely interact with these users and have second-hand knowledge about the actual user group.
Organize the findings to decide on the number of personas
Clearly identify the primary user personas who are most relevant to the product and secondary user personas who may have additional needs.
Describe and visualize your personas
Give your personas life by describing their lives with many little details and visualizing them, so that throughout the process of designing the product, you will always design to cater to the needs of the persona.
Iterate as needed
As with any design process, it is also extremely crucial to make sure to update your personas with any new details throughout the design process so that the designs being made are for the actual humans and solving the right problems.
Finally, we are here to see some of the crucial aspects of Fintech personas. In my personal experience of working with Fintech personas, these have been the most crucial aspects that any Fintech persona needs to capture to make sure that the product being built is robust and human. Note: All the below aspects are to be captured in addition to the steps we discussed above to make sure that the persona is robust enough.
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Trust in fintech products
If Fintech products could get only one thing right, it would be this: TRUST. This is the main factor to make sure that the users adopt the financial product and this factor alone brings dividends that are unimaginable in the long run. Although this is the most important factor, it is difficult to understand this outright while doing user research. It is something that needs to be understood by observing the users and reading between the lines. Questions in the user interview should be framed in such a way that the user’s actual thoughts are revealed and their level of trust in the platform is understood as a result. Always remember, that fintech applications deal with people’s hard-earned money and no one would bring even a penny near a financial product if they don’t trust it.
Designing an experience for the upper echelons of the socio-economic construct vs designing an experience for the lower strata individuals is a completely different ball game. Make sure to include questions to understand roughly the income of the users, if not directly from them, at least from the secondary interviews conducted with the stakeholders at the fintech company. Understanding this aspect of the user’s financial life will really impact not only the visuals but also make sure that the user is comfortable and does not feel out of place when using the application.
Some users even in this day and age of mobile applications where you can take entire loans, multiply your money and build your financial empire online, still prefer to only use the web portal or worse only transact their finances by communicating with someone at the financial company. This for a large part, comes from the fact that the user may not be tech-savvy enough or may not trust their own skills when it comes to transacting their money online. To understand the tech-savvy of the users and design the best experience for them; it might be hugely beneficial to conduct usability testing on existing fintech products to see how comfortable they are.
The risk appetite of the users largely comes from the age group and mentality of the users. Although some products only deal with the customer’s money indirectly, it is an excellent idea to understand how comfortable the user is with taking risks. Running quantitative surveys and asking follow-up questions on the answers provided in these surveys will give us enough insight in most cases. This is something that should be definitely included in the persona so that the fintech business can nudge the users in the right direction of risk that is comfortable to the users
Finances are something that most laypeople don’t have much knowledge about. But some Fintech applications are built to help experts in finance with their day-to-day jobs. Financial jargon used around the application needs to be tailored to ensure that the words are making sense to the users. Oversimplifying for experts and complicating terms for laypeople might cause unnecessary distress to the users, which we want to avoid.
Every persona is unique, and when the fintech application user journeys are catered to their individual need, the platform is set for success.
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