Logo file of Smallcase a leading tradining app

Smallcase Search Page Redesign

What is a smallcase ?

a smallcase account allows an investor to buy and sell stocks based on the predefined combinations. It enables investment in ideas rather than in stocks based on various investment philosophies.

Why did I choose Smallcase?

  1. When I was using smallcase for personal investment, I found myself spending a lot of time opening each smallcase page in a new tab
  2. I watched Shashank Udupa on this stream in realized that CAGR does not hold as a good indicator of the performance of a smallcase. [1]
  3. I wanted to pick something that I was an apt user for. This way, I could think in terms of the user and make good design decisions.

Behind the scenes:
To start off, I’m not going to talk about my research at the start. I am going to dive right into the visuals and explain my reasoning along the way.

Collections tab:

Collections is meant for newbie investor looking for quick and easy resolution to the question “Where to invest” Simply because of following reasions

  1.  Collections had ETF based smallcases, low ticket smallcases, and their flagship “All whether investing” smallcase
  2. It had a ‘Pre-made’ category filter like most bought low risk, high growth
  3. It also had a popular category filter that lands us on the second page

All Smallcases Tab:

With all smallcases and their details, this section is for people with intent to research and go deeper with evaluation of returens following are the options ,

1. Find Smallcases of a theme
2. Review Returns
3. Amount in hand to invest

Task Flow: 

Why is the new flow more relevant?

1. In Old Flow selecting volatility first actually removes a lot of investment strategies if certain volatility is selected first and then a strategy is selected the user might get an empty list. 

2. In New Flow, selecting a strategy will simply give you a list , from it you can pick your filter later be it volatile or non-volatile.

3. The whole idea of smallcase is to subscribe to a basket with an investment strategy. Those strategies are sidelined by other filters on the sidebar, strategy selection filters go out of the first viewport and lose visibility.

Problems and their solution

Why Smallcase cards needs improvement ?

  • Current Product Card makes user open the product page for comparison & details. This requires a lot context switching
  • NO provision to show important metrics upfront (1M , 6M)
  • No clear indication of investment strategy filter unless the title itself doesn’t state it explicitly
  • Important property of “Rebalancing Schedule” is absent from the card

Whats the problem with Investment Strategy Filter ?

  • The key idea of smallcase is Investment strategy filter and it goes out of first viewport on current version
  • The flow makes the user select “investment strategy” last which defeats the purpose.
  • Less visibility means sometimes user might be unaware whether or not ‘strategy filter’ is applied
  • There is no hint as to what those strategy names indicate (Example: ESG)

What additional Improvements are needed

  • Long Sidebar goes out of the viewport , it makes theuser unaware of applied filters if they are concentrating on cards
  • Sometimes user lands on a list with filters Pre-applied, no provision to indicate such situation clearly

Key filters that are missing in the sidebar:

Asset type Filter: why its needed

1.  Many ETF based smallcases have titles like ‘Top Stocks’ these often give the impression that they contain stocks but they often have ETFs which consume some user investigation time. 

2. Having an ETF based filter will help people to looking to invest and stocks and etf spend less time opening checking whether a smallcase contains etfs or actual stocks

Market Cap Filter: Why its needed

1. Many investors look for investment in a specific market cap based on the market situation. 

2. There are many smallcases that focus on specific market cap and maximize returns at certain risk.

3. Currently these smallcases NEED to have those terms in the title, having a filter based on the market cap helps to remove ambiguity and dependence on the title of the smallcase.

Problem 2: The Curious Case of Hidden Charges

  • A lot of playstore reviews had similar reviews of “hidden fees’. After investigation and checking my zerodha account statement
  • i found out that there is a deduction CDSL makes. A deduction called ‘DO charges’, it is mandatory for every account holder to pay these fees to CDSL.(its around 15₹ per order per company irrespective of the amount of shares bought).
  • Even though smallcase does not take any fees during ‘rebalance’ but people often find their fund balance less than the stated during the checkout.

Solution:

Elaboration

The checkout relevance page has both buy and sell orders in the same list. People have a sense of seeing lists with prices as a grocery list.

  • Amount corresponding to sell orders gets credited and the total of buy order in the list gets deducted. Simple distinction between buy and sell list creates confusion
  • Separating these list and providing individual totals of buy and sell amount will better inform the user
  • Stating the DO amount in the summary helps in stating the deductions upfront
  • Summary also clarifies that the amount corresponding to ‘buy’ order is DEDUCTED.

Footnotes

[1] Sometimes, two investments may reflect the same CAGR, with one being more lucrative than the other. This could be because the growth was faster in the initial year for one, while the growth happened in the last year for the other.
They usually employ CAGR for investment periods ranging from three to seven years. If the tenure is more than, say, ten years, then the CAGR may hide the sub-trends in between.

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