Nudge in action
To illustrate these ideas, I analyzed the choice of architecture and nudges in the ‘choose payment method’ activity of various Indian apps. Why payments? A payment flow is ubiquitous of the purchase we make and open up a possibility to analyse a wide range of examples.
Single time payments:
As the name suggests, a single time payment represents any online payment where the money is paid upfront using a payment method. In recent times, the number of payment methods through which you could do an online purchase has increased. On average most of the platforms offer one or many of the following methods
- Credit card
- Debit card
- UPI (BHIM, Google Pay, PhonePe etc)
- Closed wallets (like PayTM, Ola Money, Amazon pay etc)
- Pay later (simple, lazy pay)
- Pay on delivery
- Meal cards (Sudexo, Zeta)
I have picked 10 tech companies that provide various services and allow their users to pay through multiple payment methods. The nature of choice architecture of the ‘payment method’ activity is mapped across a spectrum that ranges from the liberal to paternal. The ones that fall in the midway offer an individual an optimal ‘nudge’ to make a decision.
From the mapping, it’s clear that the apps that fall in the mid-range push the users toward a non-intrusive influence as opposed to others.
Types of Nudges
I could sense a pattern in the type of nudges that these apps used to influence the individuals. The nudges in these apps could be categorized into the following
Some in-depth analysis of the payment method screen and my thoughts around it.
- Lays out all the options up front
- There is no clear categorization in this type of listing. For example under the category, PayPal, the only option is PayPal
- UPI and Google pay are two different category
- The absence of a visual cue like a divider makes it even more difficult to scan the options
- Payment discounts are shown upfront but not highlighted
- Some of the major payment methods are clubbed into a single option
- All the other payments options are listed below it at the same level
This arrangement excludes visibility from all the possibilities (For example: Can Google Pay be used or not?!)
- No clear categorization
- Payment discounts upfront
- A few payment categories are shown upfront and rest of them are grouped under ‘More payment options’
- Even though payment methods are categorized, it misses a nudge to choose one over the other
- Does not show the previously used method or details
- Previously used payment methods shown upfront
- Selects a payment method by default
- Explanatory text for how to use a certain method and why certain payment methods aren’t available
- Rest of the options below that
- Payment methods grouped under categories
- Payment options are shown as categories to choose from
- Tapping on each category gives the user more information about the particular payment methods
- Though it seems like a good option, it becomes intimidating when you see a large chunk of content opening up when you tap on an option
- Takes a strong call in terms of the language used like ‘Default payment options’
- Categorizes the payment methods a little different from the usual ones. For example here the categories are ‘Payment methods with offers’
- Once the user clicks on ‘Order and pay’, the order is placed first and in case of a payment failure the order is auto-converted into ‘cash on delivery’
- How many times has your driver called and asked if its an ‘OLA money’ ride or ‘cash ride’, to realize you are not even aware of the payment method selected.
- OLA selects payment method by default and doesn’t allow the user to change it during the ride
- There are cases where you might have thought its an online payment to later realize the ride was a ‘cash’ ride.
- The fact that it auto selects the payment method without an explicit confirm makes the activity more paternal in nature.
A few more examples of a ‘choose payment option’ activity, which falls under one of the above-illustrated examples.
The next time when you design an activity which allows the users to make a choice, make sure your choice architecture provides a ‘nudge’ without being too liberal or paternal in nature.
Dharmesh is a design professional who has lead design at startups like Cleartax. He currently works for Setu, a Bangalore based fintech developer platform. He runs the Bangalore chapter of Interaction Designers Association and co-organizes DesignUp, a conference for the design community. This article was originally published on D91 labs. Follow D91 Labs for exciting insights on financial inclusion, design and technology.
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