Overcoming obstacles by The US Army

I Just Want to Pay, Don’t Make Me Think. Ugh.

<tl;dr> Online retailers work so hard to get you to buy, then administer a swift kick to the shins when it comes to payment.

My New Year’s resolution to wrote each day is being sorely tested, mainly by Making a Murderer and the compulsion to keep watching. Curse you Netflix. If you’ve not seen it, clear several hours before you start, that’s all I’m saying.

Let’s pretend Monday didn’t happen, you with me? Great.

The art and science of parting fools with their money, sorry engaging loyal consumers to spend their cash on your stuff or services is a huge area, Amazon lists over 1,300 books.

Optimisation expert, Craig Sullivan, who is you couldn’t guess from his twitter handle @OptimiseOrDie, is slightly obsessed with this type of things has written an in-depth guide to creating the perfect checkout form.

My favourite and quick read on the subject is a book called Don’t Make Me Think. It’d be nice if lots of aspects of a daily routine followed the same pattern.

Sometimes I like shopping – time to kill at an airport – sometimes I need it done as quickly as possible – ordering groceries as one or more of the offspring practice MMA moves to get my attention.

Retailers have done all the hard work to get me to the checkout page, advertised, nurtured, optimised, converted and finally, it’s time to pony up.

So, why start kicking me in the shins when I’m actually willing to hand over my cash?

Worse still, after investing all that money and effort in getting me there, why throw up a bunch of unnecessary hurdles?

Do you really need me to tell you which type of credit card I’m using when you can work it out from the number directly? Do I really need to enter my address twice when you can copy it from billing to shipping?

Does it matter if there’s a space in my postcode? Again, you have a computer wizardry team, yes? It’s not rocket science to figure it out. Same for my phone number. If it includes a + or a (, you can filter, no?

Using Paypal helps, but it’s another username/password to remember, to type and this whole thing just gets more painful when it’s on mobile.

Talking of mobile, why can’t I just take a picture of the card, the same way Apple Pay adds cards? Although I do struggle a little with the spatial gymnastics of holding the card at the right distance from the phone, maybe that’s just me.

Ironically, considering our supposed advanced technology, it’s much simpler to make purchases in places where a sophisticated banking infrastructure doesn’t exist.

Judging by the rapid development of Fintech and changes coming to the banking industry, the days of pulling slices of plastic out of our purses will be a thing of the past.

The death of banking products as we know them is going to happen much more rapidly than everyone believes, according to this post by Brett King on the death of bank products speculates on a very near future minus the banks as we know them, and includes this telling quote,

“We’ll probably be the last generation to use the term credit card and debit card…It will probably be debit access or credit access, and it will likely be loaded on to a mobile device.”

John Stumpf, CEO of Wells Fargo at Goldman Sachs Financial Conference, Dec 8, 2015

Marvellous, possibly.

It looks very much like the banks that we know today, won’t be the banks we know tomorrow. In the post above, for example, King writes that Uber drivers need a bank account to get paid and as many as 30% of the drivers don’t have one, so Uber provides the service.

[This] makes Uber the largest acquirer of small business bank accounts in the United States today.

Who would you trust to look after your pennies on day-to-day basis if everyone is getting into the banking game?

Who will I entrust my money to?

The post is part of my 2016 New Year’s resolution, day #5 <cough, a bit late>, to try writing a post every day for 30 working days. Here’s the post that kicked things off and here’s the full list. It gets easier, right? You’ll also find more of this and other stuff @toodlepip and on Facebook.

Photo (cc) Overcoming obstacles by The US Army on Flickr.


Inquisitive. Hopeful. Jovial. Cantankerous. Digital marketer. Event organiser. Long-time fan of tech, collaboration and innovation. Exploring digital, social, business, technology, society, psychology & startups. Founder Chinwag, Digital Mission, Pitch NYC, ChinwagPsych. Former Exec Dir, Social Media Week London. More short stuff @toodlepip on Twitter.

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