What can make Chip the best savings account in the world?

Hello everyone! Tom here, the man in charge of words and all things content at Chip.

I’m doing some brand and mission work with CMO @actlatham, designer @harrychip and UX lead @liamchip.

And we’re looking at bringing back our classic tagline:

"We’re building the best savings account in the world"

There’s a couple of behind the scenes changes we’ll need to make before we roll it out, but we think it’s a great aim to have.

How will we become the best? Dream big

And I’d like to know what features you think would make the world’s best savings account. Go big, let’s reach for the stars here. No such thing as a bad idea. We’ll aim for perfection figure out how to get there.

How can we fix the UK savings market?

And if you’ve also got any thoughts about what needs fixing about the UK (and beyond) savings market, please share them here!

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@Tom_Chip I’d start by fixing the features you have already before thinking too big. I’d be careful of any rapid development process in aid of losing what you already have. There’s loads of feedback, bugs etc posted on the forum with little to no engagement from the chip team.

The community would probably benefit from a clearer product roadmap. We’ve heard a lot about ideas being discussed with the further team but no follow up.

That being said you currently have little to no overview of your finances. An ambiguous amount of money is moved into your chip account every 4 days. It’s a pretty hard sale to turn that into a full “savings account”.

I’d like to see; total saved this month, comparison analytics to compare to last month. Average chip save, how often I manual save, life time statistics. This data might seem pointless but it’s all about education and reward which would aid savings.

Chip should introduce saving schemes, I believe this could be a big part of the chip app. A number of saving challenges which could be automated on behalf of the user.

A scheme that Monzo run is the 1p saving challenges, saving 1p a day increasing by 1p daily. Another scheme chip could run would be for chip to examine expenses in a single month period and round the transactions to the nearest £1 and move that money across at the end of the month a nice little bonus. All schemes could be enrolled on, you could of course unenroll from any schemes, at any time.

Push notifications and saving tips should be added to advise and encourage saving this should work side by side with the goals section of the app. The main chip interface should also include this interface.

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I second this. IFTTT integration would be nice too

There are a few things that spring to mind. The main one I’d like to see is more transparency regarding the save amounts that are being calculated. Why is it saving £100 one day and then £20 four days later when there hasn’t necessarily been significant changes? It would be good to know, especially as Chip learns more about our habits and trends, especially where it’s not predicting based on me specifically, but rather people like me.

I’d like to see more flexible goals. I don’t know why the limit is £5,000 at the moment, but I’d like it to be larger. £5,000 isn’t going to cut it if you’re saving for a house deposit, or a car, or a robot butler.

It would also be really interesting to integrate with something like Robin Hood (when they launch in the UK) so I could invest some of the money Chip thinks I can save automatically rather than just saving it. This might go beyond being the best savings account, but it would be hugely attractive.

And one that’s a bit out there, and might be specific to me, would be to do reverse saves. Rather than Chip automatically taking money out of my account, it would be good if it identified when my account was running low so automatically put money back. This would help me because my pay is sometime irregular (I’m a contractor) but I imagine would also help people who are near their overdraft limits to avoid fees.

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Couple of things.

Please do not integrate without RobinHood, but instead with someone like FreeTrade. Does the same but is a U.K. startup. Support U.K. startups.

With regards to stopping you from going into overdraft, that’s one of the features that ChipX will enable when its rolled out.

Hi all, thanks for your feedback! Sorry for the delay I’ve been on holiday for a few days.

I really like the analytics idea, I love data visualisation! It really makes the mad ether of finances so much understandable and manageable. But I know Simon’s original vision was to be more than a simple analytics tool and prioritise automation over reporting. But I think improving the reporting is definitely something that @liamchip is looking at.

And I also hear your points about fixing the existing stuff before doing anything new, and stabilising all the small bugs is definitely a priority for the tech team for the next six months!

Also we love love love FreeTrade @Marsares and more integrations with platforms like FreeTrade is definitely the kind of thing @PaulChip is looking at as part of his partnerships work.

In terms of the “thinking too big too soon” stuff, don’t worry, we’re not going to go and expand and make a load of whacky stuff before nailing the fundamentals!

The project I’m looking at is very much about focusing on a core idea/mission for the product/brand that we’d like to achieve in the long term, and how we’ll communicate that “through the line” (to use a some marketing jargon).

This came from a place where we realised we struggled with the “what do you do” question at parties, as Chip’s AI savings/money management proposition can be a bit complicated to explain. So we wanted to get back to basics.

At the same time we’re also looking at how to find a narrative to reconcile our two types of savers:

  1. People who struggle to save
  2. People with savings who want better returns

The original vision for Chip was a clever app to help you save without noticing, that along the way became one of the best instant access savings rates on the market (with the bonus referral scheme). This meant we’ve basically ended up with a brand/mission that doesn’t quite work for our savers that fall into the second category.

And that’s what I’m trying to solve!

I’m starting with taglines and then sticking some messaging underneath it, for example:

Chip. We’re building the best savings account in the world. With…

  • Market leading rates
  • Clever AI that saves for you
  • Smart reporting

So think of what you’d like to see after the “with”

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I love this idea of establishing a “North Star” for Chip, a simple statement that everything else hangs off.

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I think the number one priority is FCSC protection.

Until you get that, its not really a savings account, its an investment with returns up to 5% with your money at risk so I would start with that.

Hi @Trevt, so FSCS is something we’re prioritising and should be up before the end of the year!

But just to explain, your money isn’t considered an investment and your capital isn’t at risk with how Chip works at the moment. We store the money as e-money (which is how Monzo/Revolut/Starling started out), which is strictly speaking the same as having your money on a pre-paid card - we just don’t issue plastic cards.

This in-effect means the money stays in your name, and is ultimately stored in a big retail bank (at the moment Barclays) in a ring-fenced account as cash (ie your money isn’t used as liquidity by a bank for lending/trading purposes, like it is in the traditional banking model - the inherent risks of this model is actually why the FSCS was introduced in the first place post 2008… whilst there’s no need for FSCS with e-money in ring-fenced accounts).

So, in the unlikely event of Chip going out of business, you’ll be able to reclaim your money from the administrators. Theoretically (caveat, this stage is a bit beyond my understanding/as far as I know there’s no precedent for it), you should still be able to reclaim your money in the event of Barclays going bust, as the money is ring-fenced.

Anyway, long story short, e-money was great flexible way for us to get started and grow, but now the time has come to offer full interest bearing savings accounts, with FSCS protection. So, you’re 110% correct this is absolutely what we need to do!

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Sorry this is a bit hard to explain so bare with me. I do understand why someone wouldn’t want to do it but I think it has some merit. Okay here goes - How about a loyalty/lotto/charity account?

So the idea is this, you have an account were you pay £1 a month (it has to be a small amount because we want everyone to be able to save but also join in). Now that pound get spread into three different directions:

  1. 25p to a charity of choice. You team up with a number of charities and if a user signs up for this account they can choose a charity that their 25p per month goes.
  2. 50p goes into a pot to help pay bills or boost saving. Now the amount has to be capped so that as many people as possible can get the boost. So if the pot has 20000 pounds in then you could split it and give 40 random accounts £500 pounds. This means anyone can either get help with bills or savings every month.
  3. The last 25p (if needed) can go towards any running cost for the account. If this is not necessary (once the tech is there it should run itself) you could either add it to the charity pot or the boost pot.

Probably needs a bit of work but it would be a great way to help many people who struggle, donate to a charity of choice and also tap into the lottery effect.

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i really like this idea :slight_smile: personally @Tom_Chip i wouldn’t worry too much about the second type of Chip users and keep your focus on the original mission, but i understand if that’s not financially sound for the company. in that case i would maybe double down on the original mission and encourage the generosity and helping other people aspect of the second group, because most of us have had times in our life when money was tight and could do again at any moment (or is that just me?) so for me it’d be like supporting the NHS even if i’m not currently ill. so i like @Dolgoth’s idea because it taps into that :slight_smile:
i think the only other way you’re going to appeal to those wanting market-leading interest rates is by offering them, with all the same benefits as those you’re competing with, and that seems like a lot to achieve for a startup. chipx is one way but it needs to be allowed to grow gradually to be viable

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Okay, I have another idea but not sure how well I could explain it. I’ll give it a go though.
So in essence it would be an insurance account that pays dividends into your savings account. So the idea is that we have to have car insurance (or most insurance) and it costs a lot and most of us, hopefully, don’t have to claim on them. It would be good if our insurance products could actually work for us.

So the idea would be that everyone pays into the fund for insurance and the fund invests in FTSE dividend paying stocks (especially quarterly payers). Whenever dividends are paid the dividends are sent out in a percentage of how much you have paid into the fund. Those dividends go straight into your chip savings pot. All payments into the fund are invested in dividend paying stocks ,unless there needs to be a pot to settle any quick claims.

There could be some rules like you don’t get dividends in the first 3 months or for 6 months if you make a claim - those would have to have some sort of feasibility study I guess - but the main idea is that a product we have to have anyway can also work for us and pay towards our savings.

I’m sure there are details to work out but I’m pretty sure it would be something most people would want - savings and insurance in one!

I am huge fan of Chip, as in the environment of super low interest rates, automated savings allocation is perhaps the only way to save up substantial amount.

As a bonus, would be great to see Chip offer decent interest rates on my savings. Perhaps they can bump it up for given saved amounts, to encourage me saving more. Just an idea…

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Just a thought . . .
Would it be possible to turn the AutoSave notification in the app from the current 3 into 1.
I feel currently getting three ‘notifications’ for what is ultimately the same message just feels a bit ‘clunky’.
Anyone else agree?