Redesigning banking with behavioral economics in mind

Neil Savage reports in the MIT Technology Review how, by studying customers and rethinking the user interface, designers find ways to make online banking more enjoyable.

“To design the experience, [the BankSimple designers] looked for insights from behavioral economics, which relies on psychology to understand economic decisions. For instance, it’s easier to get people to try something if they have to opt out of it rather than opt in. The team applied this insight to a feature of the bank that allows people to set aside funds toward a particular goal; it’s not a separate account, just a line highlighted on the screen with a label like “Hawaii trip” or “new laptop.” To encourage customers to try the feature, BankSimple starts them with the goal of saving $1,000 in an emergency fund.”

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