Spending insights on the map with Google Maps Platform with Snowdrop MRS
Dozens aims to make the financial world fairer and more accessible by putting users in control of their money today, and helping them to save and grow it for the future.
After emerging in the digital banking market in the UK as a new solution that brings together several financial functionalities around saving, spending habits, and budgeting among others; Dozens launched their mobile app in January 2019 and started a crowfunding round in March 2019 which reached 100% within a few weeks of opening.
They don’t identify themselves as a new bank, instead, they are licensed as an e-money institution as well as an investing firm by the FCA, enabling them to offer both current/checking accounts as well as investment products.
What did Dozens want to achieve?
Most people take for granted being able to visualize restaurants, stores, and addresses on a map from inside the application and websites they use every day. But what if they could also map all of their spending anywhere around the world? What if they could have a financial app that helps them to save money by showing them exactly where they spend it? It’s these questions that the founders of Dozens set out to answer when they began working on a new kind of fintech startup in 2018.
Dozens wanted to build a company that puts the “Fin” in “Fintech”. While the fintech revolution has led to a lot of highly specialized money management options, its very success means that people are now managing their money across multiple apps. Ironically, despite all this new technology, many users still rely on a spreadsheet to see their complete financial picture. The Dozens app solves this problem by offering current accounts, budgeting and saving tools, and investment products all in one place.
As a new fintech, trust is a huge factor in how we gain and keep customers. Every millimeter of our app where we can build trust and show them something familiar is really valuable. I don’t think there’s another map platform that’s more familiar to consumers than Google Maps Platform.”
What has been the solution?
One of the ways that Dozens is making saving easier and more rewarding for its customers is by giving them an in-depth understanding of how much, where, when, and how they spend money. In order to do this, the company integrates rich location data from Google Maps Platform into the app. This gives customers visibility into transaction location data and context for their spending, allowing them to not only understand their habits and trends, but also reduce anxiety around potential fraud and misuse of financial products. This visibility into transaction locations helps validate spending for customers by helping them easily map exactly where and when they spend money. Mapping also eliminates common confusion about individual transactions, which may show up on a credit card or bank statement with an unfamiliar name or corporate address. Giving customers the ability to visualize their transactions on a map from within the Dozens app drastically reduces customer service calls, which Snowdrop has found to driveing down support costs by 90%.
This is made possible through the Google Maps Platform features of Routes, Places, and Maps, including static and dynamic maps, place details with basic and contact data, and geocoding to give customers unprecedented insight into their spending.
With the Dozens app, when a customer makes a purchase, it not only shows up on a transaction list in their app, but allows for drilling down into more detail.
An expanded view shows the transaction code that corresponds to the customer receipt, the merchant information, and a map showing exactly where the transaction took place. For a coffee purchased from a large chain or franchise, the transaction list might show an unfamiliar vendor such as “Corporate Coffee, Inc.” A customer who doesn’t recognize this transaction need only tap on it to pull up additional information and see the business on the map.
Once the customer recognizes the familiar logo of the shop just around the corner from their office, the transaction is validated and the need for a call to customer support is eliminated.
Dozens users also enjoy different visual summaries of how they spend, including a heat map showing when they spend. This gives them insight into whether they spend more at different times of the day or different weeks of the month or year. At first, it was a static map that displayed how much they spent in different neighborhoods or parts of the world if they’d been traveling. With dynamic maps, users can now zoom into those places and get aggregate data for any area they define. This enables insights on everything from holiday spending to which areas of their own city tend to lead them to overspend and might best be avoided. With Google Maps Platform, Dozens is able to extend the basic location details for spending to become a mechanism for users to save money.
Collaborating for innovation with Snowdrop Solutions
Dozens collaborates with Snowdrop Solutions, the leading Google Maps Premier Partner in the UK, on maps functionality for the app and integration of Snowdrop’s Merchant Reconciliation System (MRS). The Dozens team works with Snowdrop Solutions on both the commercial and technical aspects of integrating Google Maps Platform.
With the aim of reducing customer anxiety and the problem of messy transaction data, Snowdrop provides MRS. MRS combines the power of Google Maps with Snowdrops own expertise and business logic to take raw transaction data and return cleansed merchant names, logos and location information. This reduces costs to financial services providers by reducing contacts into the customer service function as well as improves the overall user experience.
Charting new horizons with dynamic maps
Dynamic maps are a huge differentiator for Dozens, from both cost and user experience perspectives. Dozens and Snowdrop Solutions see the potential for leveraging this to become a driver for online customer acquisition and fraud prevention in the near future. The company is excited to work with Google Maps Platform to go beyond user experience and cost reduction toward expanded features for customers.
Dozens has big ambitions for growing its customer base beyond the already impressive 10,000 customers gained in the first sixt months since launch. To meet its goals, the company needs to be able to bank on speed and trust.
On top of this, the technology continues to delight users. Eleanor mentions that even she and the company’s CEO have found themselves smiling at their Dozens app after seeing a restaurant on a tiny Brazilian island or a San Francisco street food stall pop up in their transaction lists. The app not only brings back to mind each transaction, but in many cases, pleasant memories too.
Dozens is exceeding its initial targets not only in terms of customer acquisition, but customer deposits. Average balances are the main KPI because that’s where Dozens makes money and measures trust.
“As a startup, we tend to view Google as one of the big corporates,” says Eleanor. “There’s always the assumption that we can only get off-the-shelf solutions. But in reality, what we find with Google Maps Platform is a huge amount of room for working together to create something new.“