One of my more significant contributions to PayPal's users and our business was influencing Product to adopt a new method for linking a bank. Having customers link a bank account to their PayPal account is very important as it opens a path to engagement with many of our core services. But doing so involved significant friction for the user. This design-led project led to a significant conversion improvement and almost $2M/year in incremental margin.
In 2008, I redesigned the link bank flow. This redesign successfully improved add bank conversion by about 75 bps. But it bothered me that it was still so difficult to do this important action. A user needed to first enter a bunch of digits that they have to find on a check, then go through an additional step to confirm the bank was theirs. There had to be a better way...
Knowing there were at least two pain points to linking a bank, I looked to solve them with a flow that would:
After researching this, I found our service provider could allow us to let some users find their bank then link and confirm it in one step. I mapped out the flow for this, created wireframes and a prototype. After many meetings with Product and executives, using the improved user experience and likely conversion improvement as a selling point, I convinced them to upgrade our service.
It took over a year to upgrade our services to enable this new flow with my team and I staying engaged to keep things on track. We did several rounds of user testing that gave compelling evidence that users would comprehend and complete this flow. Once it went live, this new link bank flow was an unqualified success with our product partners astounded at the improvement in bank conversion rates: For bank confirmation we saw 355 bps improvement in the US and 2018 bps in Canada. Based on the increased value of a customer with a linked bank account, this translates to a margin improvement of almost $2 million per year.
I am extremely happy to let you know that the frictionless add bank feature is now at 100% for both US & CA on the Profile, Add Funds & the Onboarding flows. Based on my preliminary analysis of the frictionless add bank feature, I wanted to let you know that in the US Add Bank we grew by over 3% whereas in CA we grew by over 20%. These are outstanding results! Thanks to all who made this effort happen!
My team continues to work on optimizing this flow. Later in 2017, look for further improvements including the addition of over 2000 banks that are enabled to take advantage of this service. A linked bank account is a critical element of an engaged PayPal customer, so it's our goal to have the best link bank experience anywhere.