Competitor Research

 

COMPETITOR RESEARCH

The following is research we did on top competitors amongst digital tools that help people attack their debt. We first focused on their approaches, like the tools and features they brought to the market. Then we decided on the pros and cons based on our own perceptions, along with written reviews by users of the tools. 

 
 
 
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Intuit Mint

Mint.com is a free online service that helps you track your money. We bring together everything from balances and bills to your credit score and more. It’s your financial life, in one place that’s easy to understand. Create budgets, track investments, and discover new ways to save and more.

Audience

Families and heads of household who need help with tracking their finances.

Approach

  • The app syncs with your bank accounts and credit cards to become an all-in-one information dashboard.

  • Includes bill pay, budgeting, credit score, advice, and investment tracking.

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: excellent interface clearly shows information, personalization, education, includes multiple tools

  •  Cons: ad-based, may frustrate expert users, sync issues,

 
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Credit.org: Student Loan Counseling

They offer student debt counseling to help anyone who has student loans and is concerned about keeping up with the payments. The certified, nonprofit counselors offer a review of personal finances. The counselors’ help individuals determine the best path to take.

Audience

Counselors can offer guidance on any of the federal student debt repayment options, so this experience is catered toward those with student debt.

Approach

  • Approach is personal, and gives you an online assessment before getting a personalized plan over the phone

  • Income-based repayment plans, deferment and forbearance, graduated repayment plans, extended repayment plans, student loan forgiveness, pay as you earn program, standard repayment plans, income contingent and income sensitive repayment

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: education, direct help, personal, repayment programs save money, addresses other loans

  • Cons: need a personal counselor (human interaction), just advice (not directly making something happen)

 
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Debt Manager

The Debt Manager’s goal is to help you get out of debt fast, thanks to its clean interface. It allows you to organize, effectively track, and pay off all your debts using the cheapest and fastest way possible.

 

Audience

The audience is broadly anyone with debt who wants to organize it in order to pay it off.

Approach

The approach is all-digital over the app with no interaction with a human being. The features include: inputting and viewing total debt summary, record monthly payments, track and analyze each debt and view interactive reports. Summarizes with a progress bar, your debt free date and total interest savings.

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: input “what if”s, all interactions are done by the user on the app

  • Cons: poor user interface, can't connect to a separate financial source so the user must manually input all data

 
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Prosper Daily 

Previously known as BillGuard, it allows users to view all accounts in one place, track credit score and optimize personal finances. It applies all transaction history to budget easily into categories for the user. This application focuses on providing users with ID protection as well as finances.

Audience

The audience is focused on experience financial users. These users have to have good credit scores and substantial annual income to apply.

Approach

  • The approach is to consolidate loans and link external financial accounts. While tracking loan payments and spending habits.

  • Providing a goal-oriented progress, the users establish goals for focus loans and the application provides a budget plan that best applies to their goals.

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: an established loan lender, free monthly credit score monitoring, alerts suspicious activity on accounts, categories for budgeting, smart capabilities to have bills/purchases memorized

  • ons: minimum 640 credit score to apply, app has common history of no connecting and staying connected to external accounts

 
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Credit.org: Debt Management Plan

A Debt Management Plan, also known as a DMP, is a debt relief option where a counseling agency works with your creditors to come up with a more suitable monthly payment for your situation. The DMP is an agreement between three parties; the counselor, the client, and the creditor.

Audience

The audience is someone in more of an extreme debt scenario. Unsecured debts may be included in the plan; secured debt such as mortgages, home equity loans, and auto loans are not included, nor are student loans.

Approach

  • Counselor: Budgeting help, liaison between parties, payment processing, progress reports, education, ongoing support

  • Creditor: Accept payments, stop calling, update credit report, concessions

  • Client: Learn, make payments, don’t seek new credit, read all statements/progress reports, call for help.

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: education, direct help, personal, monthly reports, collection calls stop, penalty fees waived or reduced, consolidated debts

  • Cons: need a personal counselor (middle man), creditor faults can cause trouble (not direct from client), all debts treated the same (not personalized)

 
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Debttracker Pro

Allows user to stay on top of their accounts from anywhere. The simplicity of the user interface, with your accounts, numbers, and balances, makes it easy to see the entire picture, and allows you to focus directly on paying off debt.

 

Audience

The audience is broadly anyone with debt who wants to organize it in order to pay it off.

Approach

Consolidates all debt, in a very blunt manner with a simplified user interface. The user inputs their accounts and customizes their repayment method, which prompts the app to recommend a payment amount for each debt account; show total interest paid, and set up payment reminders.

Pros/Cons

  • Pros: all interactions are on the app by user, debt is listed all in one location, payment reminders
  • Cons: poor user interface, must manually input data, does not personalize based on interest rate