*Special Thanks to Maura Farver from the Common Cents Lab at the Center for Advanced Hindsight for lending her big. bright. mind. to this team.
How might we help members who are struggling with debt pay off their debt faster?
Small Bites is a credit card repayment solution that uses behavioral science to improve a person’s comfort, consistency and success with paying down credit card debt.
Testing was developed and conducted with the assistance of the Common Cents Lab at the Center for Advanced Hindsight, a research center with Duke University. A survey was distributed by three credit unions to between 12,000 and 20,000 members depending on credit union size. Half of the selected members have a credit card with the participating credit union and half did not.
We asked a series of questions to identify the scope of credit card debt among credit union members and how people made their payments. We then presented a short video highlighting our product and asked follow up questions to determine interest in the product.
These are some of the key results that supported or guided our development:
- 51% indicated that they are currently carrying credit card debt month to month. 75% indicated that they have at some point carried a balance. This proved that there is a need for credit card pay down solutions
- Only 4% of respondents who were carrying a credit card balance were interested in a weekly payment option. Most respondents (58%) who are carrying balances preferred a payday alignment. Our prototype was modified to allow users to modify frequency.
- When asked how much they would pay if they paid weekly versus monthly, respondents with credit card debt indicated that they would pay an average of 74% more than the minimum payment amount. This proves that there is some flexibility in amounts paid and we added the option for the member to “nudge” payments up or down.
- When asked if they would use Small Bites or suggest it to a friend, more than half of the respondents who are carrying debt indicated that they were somewhat likely or very likely to use/recommend it. This supports the idea that a simplified credit card repayment solution is of interest to credit union members.