Altruist, a mobile app designed to encourage charitable donations, was built with user experience and loyalty in mind.
Charitable giving is not the first thing that comes to mind when talking about mobile apps. But for these founders, charity and social entrepreneurship are a way of life. Technology can be about more than fun and convenience.
Enter Altruist, a mobile application concept that Cuttlesoft helped build back in 2015.
The idea was this: take every transaction a person makes via their credit or debit cards and round up to the next dollar. Then, donate that change to a charity of the user’s choice (think Acorns, but for charity).
When designing Altruist, we knew that the look, feel, and performance of the app would be critical. That’s why we went with Cuttlesoft. The technology they employ helps us maximize our impact. Brian Clark Co-Founder
Beyond the normal challenges associated with building any mobile app, the Altruist team was tasked with finding a way to make dozens of daily micro-transactions secure and cost-effective. Because of the high cost of credit transfer, multiple transactions of pennies a day would add up quickly, leaving little for the actual charities.
That’s what pushed the Altruist team to think outside of the box. Instead of directly depositing each micro-donation, the app would store the pennies and dimes in an “app bank” that would grow until it reached a threshold balance. Then, once the “bucket” was full, that amount would be donated. Since bank fees are charged on a per transaction basis, larger, less frequent donations cut down on the percentage of cash being eaten by fees.
Once the problem of frequent transactions was solved, the Cuttlesoft team focused heavily on user experience. It was essential that they ask,
“How can we make donating as simple as possible?”
Altruist gives individuals an opportunity to turn everyday purchases into positive change.
They knew that the more hassle involved in setting up and using this app, the fewer users would complete the process and start making micro-donations. The team looked at different functionalities, like touchless ID and the ability to automatically scan credit cards, to make the app as user-friendly as possible. This was a case where a well-designed UX (user experience) could have a real, measurable impact.On top of UX, Cuttlesoft knew that branding and design were hugely important factors for Altruist. If altruist was going to work, users would need to immediately trust the app with their banking information. A professional and high-performance design by Jacob Waites left zero room for doubt as to the integrity and security of the software, as well as to the mission of its creators.
At the completion of the project, Altruist’s founders had a gorgeous mobile app and a unique new way to encourage charitable donations.
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