"This is an app based on solid thinking, with a well-structured plan and execution that brings measurable benefit for their clients and users." The UK App Awards judges.
Fresh off the back of our victory at the UK App Awards, we'd like to share some insights about how we made the Fintech App of the Year for Vanquis Bank.
The victorious team come up to collect their award
To start with, we analysed the existing Vanquis app: it was decent but wasn't meeting the fundamental needs of the customers.
This desire for improvement led to our focused Discovery process: attentive customer research determined the various personas of who would use the app and how their user stories might look.
Within just 2 days, we created 10 concepts for how to cross-sell Vanquis products on mobile, including designs for 2 of these, and wireframes for 5 more.
In 5 days, we had mapped the customer journey, assessed competitor approaches, created 8 solution options, and developed a technical architecture that we could show to the executive leadership at Vanquis. In addition, we conducted extensive user testing at this early stage.
This work convinced Vanquis to select us as a digital partner, and allowed us to move on to Proof of Concept. This stage is where we turned the concept into a bona fide product that we could again present to the Vanquis executive team.
Esther Hollingsbee and Adam Scott sharing the secrets of an award-winning app
One key determinant of our success was our use of 'Product Owners': somebody who has the final say on product decisions. This is an essential way of keeping the project moving; otherwise, there's the danger that you keep tinkering with a product and it doesn't get to market quick enough.
Another factor was our relentless focus on user testing from an early stage. As amazing as our developers are, there's always the chance that their approach might miss something in the user story. We therefore tried out changes with Vanquis customers consistently and took their feedback on board. This testing process was holistic and used a wide variety of methodologies to inform its conclusions.
In the end we developed a range of really useful features, such as Promise to Pay (which helps those struggling with their cashflow), continuous development of new features and a Referral service. These go above-and-beyond what a conventional banking app can offer.
The results of this creative process are plain to see: Vanquis met their five-year target for their app within a single year, and a staggeringly high 10% of users chose to review the App. Half of all debit card payments occur through the app, despite only 35% of the customer base using the app.
It was a great honour for this hard work to be recognised with an award, and is a testament to the hard work and dedication of team members past and present. If you'd like to find out more about our work with Vanquis Bank, watch this short film from our recent Breakfast Briefing 'How to build a 5 star banking app in financial services.'
Or you can download the Vanquis case study here for full details about the project.