Empowering business owners and helping them make more informed decisions about their enterpirse
Dojo is a card payment provider for various small to enterprise-sized businesses, mainly targeting the hospitality and retail sectors. The Reporting and Insights project is aimed to help merchants understand, control and grow their business and increase their financial literacy. We also wanted to drive more traffic to the app and make it a valuable go-to tool for traders to guide them to make more informed decisions regarding their enterprise.
Business fail within the first year
Will go bust within their first three years of trading
Reason for churn at Dojo is merchants going out of business
Reason why businesses fail is cashflow
Merchants need a more comprehensive understanding of their business performance but have no time to digest large quantities of data. Most of them have EPOS systems or accountancy software that provide some reporting functionalities. Still, the way data is presented is hard to comprehend, and in the case of some EPOS systems, it cannot be accessed remotely. In Dojo app, they can download CSV files with all their transaction and transfer details; however, it takes a lot of time and effort to spot trends from a very detailed spreadsheet. Also, many of our vendors access app via their mobile devices, so viewing spreadsheets on their phones is very inconvenient. Apart from data access and format issues, the other problem was that business owners are extremely busy and often understaffed. They don't have time to make sense of numbers; they need a quick visual overview of their business to help them act quickly.
Lack of financial literacy
Irrational & often poor financial decisions affected
by cognitive biases
Compromised business, issues with cashflow & potential closure
Working closely with our customer Insights team, we started this project by running qualitative and quantitive research. We interviewed 15 Dojo and 6 non-Dojo customers and sent an online survey to 500 business owners. The aim was to identify the value the merchants would place on having data analytics/performance reporting from their card provider. We also wanted to know what metrics would be most beneficial for them and in what format.
I've also run extensive competitor analysis. I looked at products like Square, Stripe, SumUp, Fresha, Fisver and iZettle and discovered that most of our competitors offer some reporting in a dashboard with graphs and charts. I've also looked at other products like Xero, Quickbooks, Monzo, Revolut and many trading apps to see the best data visualisation and reporting practices.
I've organised a stakeholder workshop to kick off the project. I've invited various team members like engineers, data, fellow designers, product managers, customer insights, commercial etc. I wanted to have a broad spectrum of opinions and views. The workshop's objective was to align the vision for this feature, set up priorities, and identify gaps in the knowledge that could be potential blockers. We also wanted to define how the MVP would look like vs 1rst iteration.
We wanted to start small, measure and iterate. We decided that we were going to send a "Quarter in review" email to a randomised group of our customers (10k merchants) that had at least a full second quarter of trading. The email was similar to Spotify end of the year summary but showed total sales, the total number of transactions, total refunds, and average transaction value. Those metrics were chosen based on our previous research. At the bottom was a survey in which we asked users if they found this helpful, what other data they would be interested in, and in what cadence.
54% unique open rate - passed the threshold
46,3% repetitive open rate - passed the threshold
91.7% of people responded that they would be very or somewhat
disappointed if they didn't receive an email like this again.
64% would like to receive this type of info monthly, and 24% weekly.
87% would like this information to sit in the app.
Apart from business performance, merchants mostly wanted to see data
around returning customers and revenue comparison between similar businesses
in the area (multiple selections plus text box)
Build and measure fast
Working closely with the data and engineering team, we decided that the fastest way to build and measure would be to embed Looker UI into our apps (IOS, Android and Web). This quick solution allowed us to get results and feedback fast. Looker is a business intelligence software and big data analytics platform we use internally at DOJO. We released Reporting and Insights on the app at the beginning of October 2022, and it became one of the top 3 viewed features in the app.
We continued interviewing users about how they use data to run their businesses and what data they lack. We also collaborated with enterprise and mid-market account managers to understand the needs of our more prominent clients. Surprisingly even though big businesses have access to many data sources, they still have a big appetite for more data. I worked closely with C.A.R.B.S team (Clearing, Authorisation, Reconciliation and Settlement) because they worked on card tokenization that would allow us to show repeated customer data.
The Looker dashboards were set up in a way that data was loading up to 8 seconds (this has been improved now)
Looker was charging us a licence per view - which, with our growing customer base, was not a scalable solution for the future.
Looker UI could have been more transparent and user-friendly - especially on mobile. We had various UI limitations - especially with filter designs.
Because of all the issues with Looker we decided to replace it. I was responsible for organizing demos for data visualization products, including Tableau, Fusion Charts, Qlik, Plotly etc. However, we quickly realized that most of this software does the same as Looker (with better visuals) and will cost us a lot. We decided to build our charts from scratch using chart JS libraries. This will be much work for our engineers to start with, but in the long run, it will allow us more flexibility and control over UI once the feature begins to grow.
Mobile friendly design
In our research it came up that even though merchants had a lot of data in their EPOS - in many cases this information could not be accessed remotely which was a massive pain point for them and blocker to use data to support decision making. That’s why we made sure that our dashboard design is adopted for native mobile. A mobile-friendly design allows users to have 24/7 control.
It enables users to identify trends and patterns that might not be immediately apparent in a numerical spreadsheet. Giving merchants the ability to filter by different date ranges, day, week, month, year allows them to see the big picture as well as fine detail of their business. This alone can combat most of the biases mentioned earlier
Many of our customers said they don't have time to analyse charts and graphs; hence, they often miss early warning signs or still can't figure out why a particular day performed well. Therefore I've teamed up with our Data and Machine Learning team, and we are working on turning data into actionable insights and cross/upsell opportunities. For example, we can tell merchants about specific times of the day or days themselves underperforming, and they can tell merchants their competitors increased their revenue by starting to use payment links etc. They won't have to spend time trying to make sense of numbers, we will do it for them in a concise, bite-sized format.
Another idea I had is to allow merchants to set up alerts that would send in-app, email or text notifications. This would be very useful for refunds or non-integrated payments; for example, if trading locations have an EPOS, if a seller is making non-integrated payment, this often means they are stealing from their employee. Excessive amounts of refunds can also be a sign of fraud taking place. Therefore alerts would quickly notify business owners and allow them to react quickly.
Giving merchants ability to compare their performance metrics, such as sales, number of transactions, and returning customers, against competitors. This will help them assess how well their business is doing and identify areas that require improvement. Merchants can aim to match or exceed industry benchmarks, ensuring their targets are grounded in market realities.
We got feedback from Enterprise and Mid-marker account managers that they spent a lot of time creating custom reports for their customers, which are sent to them on a regular basis. Because bigger businesses are too busy to go to the app set up and download CSV files each week, they often depend on account managers to provide this type of service for them. CSV reports also allow minimal customisation, so merchants get a lot of data that might need to be more relevant to their business.
Moreover, during our interview with users, we discovered that most business owners are extremely busy and understaffed; therefore, they will appreciate any automation/time-saving solution. This is why we introduced a new sub-feature, which allows merchants to create custom, automated reports about their transactions or transfers that will be sent to their email at the cadence of their choice (daily, weekly, monthly).
Although average Dojo customers mostly take card payments (83% of their turnover), that number gets a bit lower with SME customers (75%), for which we are missing a chunk of data regarding business performance. If we want Reporting & Insights to be a tool that helps merchants understand, control and grow their business, we should sort out the lack of data about the cash. I am organising a brainstorming meeting in the near future to figure out how we can solve this problem - either collaborate with our EPOS partners or add an option to register cash via a card machine.
I am working closely with the commercial team and our Product Marketing Managers to figure out which parts of Reporting & Insights should be paid extra. We are currently running "willingness to pay" research to determine how much our users will pay for some of this data.