Did you profit from the GameStop or AMC rallies? Or were you sitting on the sidelines, experiencing FOMO, as you watched your friends benefit from the largest short squeeze of the century? Since the pandemic, the amount of retail investors in the US increased by 250%, growing the stock research market to a $28B+ industry. Retail investors now account for 1/3 of all US stock market trading, with a demonstrated ability to move markets.
Now that the concept of growing wealth, generating passive income, and the rise of meme stocks are at the forefront of mainstream media, millennials and subsequent generations are realizing that they need to invest now in order to retire later. With inflation rising faster than most savings accounts, betting on stocks proves to be the more efficient way to build wealth.
However, there’s always been a huge barrier to entry into the stock market, especially for beginner retail investors. With the large amount of stock information available, combined with the riskiness of investing, there exists a need to make stock research easier for beginner investors*.
Currently, when users look at a stock’s performance over time, they can hover over any point in time on a stock chart and see quantitative data (price, trade volume, etc.). However, there is no corresponding qualitative data (press releases, news, etc.) displayed on the page. Users must perform multiple searches in separate tabs in order to piece the puzzle together, which leads to a high drop-off rate throughout the research process.
We hypothesize that:
Leading us to the following problem statement:
“How might we make stock research easier for beginner investors so that they can derive insights faster and feel more confident about their research?”
*We define beginner investors as individuals with less than 1-2 years of active trading experience and a lower confidence in stock picking.
User pain point + feedback
To confirm our hypotheses and gain deeper understanding of our users’ pains, needs and desires, we applied generative and evaluative research methodologies.
1. User interviews
3. Key Insights
1. Usability Tests and In-Depth Interviews (IDI)
Our research enabled Yeyen to create:
Landing on the solution
Through our research, we confirmed our initial hypotheses and established 3 key jobs to be done:
Next, we ideated on Miro to arrive at some interesting solutions:
Since we only had 5 weeks of development time, Joey grounded us on what was technically feasible to build. With Joey’s input, combined with what we thought would bring the most value for our users, we landed on 3 key features to prioritize for demo day:
After finalizing our key features, we defined our North Star metrics as:
For our product to be successful, we would have to see both metrics increase.
Explanation of solution
HelloStocks makes stock research quicker and more digestible for beginner investors. Our product maps news articles to price fluctuations on a stock chart by fetching data from Polygon and Finnhub API’s. With HelloStocks, users are able to see qualitative and quantitative data on a stock chart so that they can save time and stay on one webpage. Our goal is to empower users by providing a more holistic view of major price movements and serve as a starting point for their stock research.
Adaptive Communication: Communication is key to collaboration. Understanding how my team members communicate and adapting my communication style to match theirs leads to smoother collaboration and unlocks true empathy.
Prioritization & Negotiation: Every week consisted of narrowing the scope and prioritizing features while balancing user needs. I learned to negotiate with my teammates by providing alternatives and leveraging data to drive decisions. Working in Agile enabled me to iterate as needed in order to deliver incremental value to our users.
Data backed design decisions: Starting off with a research plan for the entire cycle and collecting data helped me become a more empathetic designer that continually advocates for users. When questioned on design decisions, I can always back up my designs based on real data, not intuition.
Agile Methodology & Open Communication: Working in Agile has taught me to be flexible and patient with my research and design processes, and helps me iterate and pivot faster with my team. By using this process with open communication, we quickly put out small fires before they became bigger problems.
Collaborating with a PM & Designer: Everyone has their distinct roles but we all come together to bring the project to life. Cross communication between team members is very important. Being a team player is everything.
Agile Methodology: It’s important to stay on track, but sometimes things don’t go as planned so being adaptable is key. Given we had 5 weeks to complete this project, 2 week sprints became one week sprints so it was important to focus on main features and quickly make adjustments when needed.
Making trade-offs is prevalent throughout the product development cycle! Whether it be design, development or product trade-offs, striking a balance between delivering maximum user value and meeting business needs is a tough feat. Our team was able to master this by empathizing with our users, understanding project scope, and ensuring alignment between each other.