If you had the opportunity to pay a small fee (in our case £5) per month for a subscription to a premium account, what features would you want (or like) it to include to justify this?
We’ve already announced some features for Dozens Black but I’m interested to hear whether there are other things that might represent real value to you personally? I can’t guarantee we can do it all just because it is requested, but I would certainly like to know what comes to mind when you think of this possibility.
I’ve read some thoughts on this before, but unlike other apps, Dozens can offer benefits across current accounts, cash savings AND investments, so maybe there’s something unique we can offer that you couldn’t get elsewhere.
I’m keen to hear all your thoughts, but I’d like to offer a couple of clarifications in advance:
We aren’t changing our mission or values. We are still focused on helping customers look after their financial interests in the long run, so (probably) …
no cashback for spending splurges
no holding crypto
As a related question, I am aware that many packages include insurance products. I don’t think it is realistic to include this in a £5 subscription. However, if the cost increased to £10 a month, then this becomes more realistic. In which case, what types of cover would make the most sense for you? There are many different things that could be covered; house, car, travel, phones, contents, health, pets, etc.
I’ll have a think about options but one thing that would be good and I haven’t seen elsewhere is a truly pick and mix approach to the ‘premium subscription’, where you could tailor the package to fit your needs, without duplication. The price paid would reflect the options selected. I suppose you could specify a minimum threshold if necessary.
For those who have medium to large investment portfolios Dozens Black is already excellent value (flat fee of £5/month which gets rid of percentage based platform fee). I’m in this category and don’t really have expectation of Dozens Black to include more than what it already does. For me the deciding factor on whether or not I continue using it beyond the free promotional period (and Dozens Invest in general) will be the extent to which the app improves by the end of the year, rather than whether Dozens Black has more benefits.
But for those just starting out investing or not yet investing it might be better to have option of a different benefit than the removal of platform fees from Dozens Invest.
Completely agree with you on the current black offer and, if things continue to develop, will probably pay next year, assuming it is still a thing. I haven’t seen anything yet about ISA transfer though which is a shame and the lack of transparency as to which funds are GIA and which are ISA is another ongoing issue, but drifting off topic.
Yeah I’ll start another thread on what I think needs to improve with the existing app/service to avoid derailing this one. Maybe over the weekend or next week.
Monzo tried to do this but the execution was not good. Subsequently, HSBC has launched Select and Cover which appears to have been going for around 1.5 years now.
Pick and Mix Insurance appeals to me but the key is execution. I wouldn’t want to have to pay a base subscription which was of no value to me to gain the privilege of access to pick’n’mix insurance (that was the Monzo approach). I also wouldn’t want it to be just a marketplace where you are matched with multiple insurance providers and end up with multiple points of contact for different issues. I’d want a single point of contact I could call for any insurance-related issue. This could be switchboard or Dozens phone number which handles authentication and then diverts me to the relevant provider.
My frustration with most packages is you end up with duplication. I guess this is relied upon to keep the prices down but it will also dissuade people. Why would I want to pay for vehicle recovery assistance more than once for example. Other than that I think most of the ideas for offerings are already out there, and as you say, other than insurance, black already ticks a lot of boxes.
In terms of additional offerings over and above the standard suite of insurance products, what about some form of fraud protection support, credit status monitoring, identity theft support etc.
Multiple virtual cards - single use ‘disposable’ ones, perhaps ones with spending limits / limited to/excluding certain retailers/transaction types.
Intersecting with that - children’s cards.
If previously floated children’s accounts with the ability for a parent to fund a bond like product - ie let them save money and pay the interest on it from my account. I think this would be a great way to teach kids about saving - allowing me to offer meaningful bonuses for my kids saving child-sized sums… ‘if you save that £20 from granny in your bank, next year you’ll have £20.20 just doesn’t cut it :)’
Euro card/account might be useful if we ever get to travel again, sure others would appreciate other currencies.
Prepaid gift cards - ie send someone a dozens card pre-loaded with money.
Proper API access to my money (not just account info).
Reward credit card (perhaps pay a cash back bonus if paid off in full). I’m aware this is probably not a good fit, but AmEx basically stops me using any fintech for day to day spending - I expect to get paid for spending my money
Preferential savings rates? (I know bonds satisfy this right now, but you must imagine a future where people have significantly more saved in dozens than you can sustain bonds?)
I’m strongly anti-bundled insurance, but I have to confess that Revolut plus is so cheap I’m considering it… may not cover lots but a small price to pay to take the sting out of buying a new phone and breaking it a week later.
Do a deal with NatWest to use their magic get a secret code to obtain cash from a cash machine without your card (ie if you’ve lost it).
And I’m still waiting for that hinted at ‘pay off all your debts’ - just about worth £5/month
I think dozens would be at risk of creating a uniquely complicated subscription. Card features, fx, insurance AND investment fees all bundled into one?!
The platform fee waiver alone is already great value - as noted above, the segregation and other bits of the app need sorting to make it attractive. Not sure playing about with the sub is a good idea right now. My main concern is it’s too good to be true and will be pulled!
Insurance - it’s hard to know what’s going to happen with the new rules requiring the same deal for new and existing customers. Is there a standout insurer dozens could partner with that shares the dozens ethos? I doubt it… The relationship between insurers and customers generally has been toxic for a while. I’m not sure the intermediation model works for banks or consumers, ultimately.
You could copy and paste from elsewhere. Starling offers extra personal accounts at £2 a month, then there are lots of kids’ cards floating around… The problem would be getting anyone to pay, when you have Hyperjar in the mix.
In short, Black is good as it is - it just needs the app to catch up.
Thank you all so much. Some fascinating insights here.
I will definitely work to better explain the current benefits of Dozens Black, and I will also take on board the feedback about a couple of outstanding bits of work that needs done (we are doing a lot in the back end but not sure when it will be available in the live app).
In general, I do tend to agree that while there are benefits to ‘packages’ that are flexible, the additional complication, particularly to make them personalised, can make them complex to communicate.
As a matter of interest, if we weren’t looking at new features, but were more focused on useful / personalised insight or tools, is there an area that would be of value? I see a couple of you mentioned API access so I was wondering what it was that you were looking to do with this?
It’s a good question, as for me, the only benefit from Dozens Black which I can’t get or don’t have elsewhere, would be no platform fees when investing - if I had funds with Dozens.
This feels a little niche - how much in funds would you need to hold to offset the £5 Black free?
I suspect you need a product offering which attracts more people. I would only pay for an account if I benefited financially and without to high a break even point - for instance the Santander 123 Account or the old NatWest Reward one or a cashback credit card.
Things like open banking or API will only ever attract a very small number of people. Perhaps this will be easier when your deposit or capital protected products rollout (assuming they are still planned) - or if you are able to add shares as well as funds.
On the subject of insurance, as you say there are many different types but non which will be applicable/attractive to all your customers and I presume if you did offer travel or medical, it would come with age or other restrictions…
I think Dozens Black is a great product and I will continue my subscription once the trial period is over. Here are a couple of points that I think would complete Dozens as the best all round financial hub.
Lower the minimum monetary value for fund investment. Allow regular monthly investing of say £100 without the initial £1000 outlay, it would make it more accessible.
Partner with the likes of Investec or Paragon to offer interest paying cash savings accounts with full FSCS protection to compliment the bonds and investment offerings.
For me these really are the only things missing other than a good tidy up of the app and UI. Everyone is jumping on the insurance product bandwagon and I don’t feel following the likes of Revolut and Monzo is necessary. Dozens has a unique position in the Fintech world and I believe the points stated above would strengthen it further and make it a true one stop shop for financial management. Just my thoughts anyway.
There are also fee-free ATM withdrawals abroad and fee-free transfers in other currencies. These are probably attractive features for a set of customers only and much less so during lockdown…
But yeah, I think it comes down to the investment fees really.
The 40k to break even on the subscription, if investing eg exclusively in Vanguard funds, is pretty steep I think. They may be better off offering discounted platform fees on certain funds up to a certain amount, as other providers sometimes do
Don’t forget “?nonce=…”, you definitely don’t want to accidentally pay the same person twice because a network glitch. You would also want to digitally sign the request with a hardware key (such as a small USB device) or a private key that’s generated locally and never sent over the network (only the public key is shared with the server). Failing that, HMAC with a PSK is still better than nothing. This is to prevent SSL stripping+replay attacks and mitigate the risk of a compromised CA.
Imagine your bank automatically pays anyone who needs to be paid at the right time and never get you into overdraft if you don’t have sufficient funds to pay, and can prioritise the payments if the predicted balance is not enough to cover all expected payments. That’s the smart banking I’m talking about. None of the existing banking service can do this, and I doubt anyone will have it anytime soon, so all I ask is a set of APIs to allow me to do it myself.