How to Make a Money-Saving App and Succeed in the Fintech Industry

CHI Software
5 min readOct 27, 2021

Mobile solutions are always at hand to help manage spending and illustrate it with graphs and reports. On the one hand, it’s a no-brainer for users; on the other, it’s an attractive niche for business investments.

COVID-19 made the market for finance apps flourish, with 4.6 billion app downloads and 16.3 billion in-app hours in 2020. Now is probably the best time to create your own money-saving app. And while you’re considering your options, we’ll share what we know on this subject.

Brief Overview of the Money-Saving App Market

A lot of economies, except China, saw growth in finance app downloads. The number was the highest in India and reached almost 900 million downloads, a 25 percent increase compared to 2019. The U.S. had a 20 percent increase, approaching 500 million downloads a year.

Finance apps downloads, 2020 vs. 2019
Source: App Annie & Liftoff

The average demand for finance apps in Western Europe grew by 85 percent between the first quarters of 2020 and 2021. Even more, in Germany it grew by 161 percent, and in the UK, by 129 percent. It seems that COVID-19 has had a long-lasting effect on customer preferences.

Finance app install trends (Western Europe)
Source: AppsFlyer

These trends are not likely to change anytime soon. All kinds of financial activities (including money-saving) will retain their popularity in both developed and developing markets.

How Does a Money-Saving Application Work?

As you can see, apps available on the market all have unique features, but they should have some things in common as well. Keep this flow in mind when building a money-saving mobile application.

1. Users create an account in the system.

2. They add their financial information and link cards and bank accounts.

3. Then, users pick a savings/investment plan if they have options.

4. They use their cards and accounts while the app automatically withdraws savings according to the chosen plan.

Must-have Features of an App for Saving Money

Now, how do you make the app’s workflow run? Start to build a money-saving app with essential features first — they form the application’s MVP (minimum viable product).

Must-have features of a money-saving app

1. Sign-up and onboarding. Try to divide the registration process into several parts, with no more than three questions in each part (screen). And consider adding biometric authentication.

2. Bank accounts management. This is the user’s in-app space where they can add financial information and manage their wallets.

3. Spending tracker. Providing spending categories is vital. Category examples include food (with groceries and restaurants included), shopping, housing (rent, utilities, etc.), transport, entertainment, and so on.

4. Automatic savings withdrawal. A certain amount of money is regularly withdrawn from the user’s account. The smarter the algorithms you have, the better they will adapt to the user’s spending and form a savings sum.

5. Investments. This feature may also be more advanced: in-built artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms can analyze spending and offer an investment plan tailored to the user’s spending habits.

5 Steps to Create an App for Saving Money

In this section, we have step-by-step instructions on how to create a money-saving app. Each of these points is crucial for a successful outcome, so we don’t recommend skipping a thing.

How to create an app for saving money

1. Conduct market research

What will happen when your product hits the market? You can make some assumptions based on the research.

  • Define who your users are and what pain points they have at the moment. Do they need your product?
  • Check out your potential competitors and their market niche. Are there any gaps you can fill?

After this research, you should clearly define your target audience and your strongest competitive advantages.

2. Invest in quality design

Key points to consider:

  • Minimalism. The more complex the money-saving app you’re going to create is, the simpler the interface it should have.
  • User flow clarity. Users should quickly realize what button to tap next and where it will bring them.
  • Micro-animations. These are aimed to demonstrate an action or a change in the interface. It’s another way to add more clarity.

3. Start the coding part

At this stage, your tech team should get a complete work scope from you. Let developers finish an MVP part before moving any further and adding new functionality to the list. You should get a firm foundation first, on which you’ll be able to build up a solid digital product.

4. Test out the app with real users

Detailed feedback from real users is a valuable asset before the app hits the shelves. Let your potential customers try out your MVP and check its navigation. You’ll be surprised how many details you can miss when you practically live with your business idea every day.

5. Invest in marketing

According to AppsFlyer, EMEA territory heavily depends on marketing efforts: more than 50 percent of finance app installs are non-organic. Be it a banking or a money-saving application, it requires a lot of attention from your marketing team.

Follow the link if you’re craving more information on how to build a money-saving mobile app. We’ve prepared more market insights, tech stack details, and an overview of successful market examples.



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