Rocket: 13 July - 28 August 2020

We're kicking off our next sprint for the year, and I'm excited to tell you about what we've got planned. 

Rather than adding the features that you already expect from a portfolio tracking app (e.g. more graphing granularity), we've decided to spend the next six weeks trying to take a bold step in a completely new direction, experimenting with one of the ideas we have that we think could be a game-changer for how you manage your finances.

We've always hoped that Lettuce will ultimately be the app that lets you put your investing on autopilot. This is our first step towards that dream.

Story 1: Rules engine

The problem

Managing your money is a hassle. Most of the time, people have to keep their financial strategy straight in their minds, and have to remember to execute their plan manually. There's no easy way to set down simple "money recipes" or strategies for ourselves, and to easily keep track of them.

The solution

Let's allow users to set up easy "if this, then that" rules to help them keep their investing strategy on track.

One day, we want to allow users to set up rules to automatically MOVE their money. But as a first step, we want to let them set up simple alerts/notifications.

We imagine customers setting up notifications like:

  • Alert me when my #cryptocurrency tag is > 10% of my portfolio value (and tell me what rand value I'd have to sell to get back to 10%)
  • Alert me every month on the 5th if the balance of my emergency fund is > R10,000
  • Alert me if the price of AAPL.US goes above R9,000
  • Alert me if the value of emergency fund is > the value of my retirement account
  • Alert me every month on the 28th how much more I have to save to hit my Japan fund savings goal of R50,000.
  • Send me the total of all my #day-to-day accounts every Monday morning.
  • Once a month, tell me what percentage I am towards my financial independence number.

This feature will get much more useful once your accounts are syncing in real-time (which is another feature we hope to build soon) and when Lettuce can ACTION your strategy (e.g. initiate trades for you). But this will be the first step in what we hope will become one of the defining features of the product :)

There are a few different routes we're considering, for this feature. We'll be designing as well as building this during the sprint!

VERSION 1 - THE VANILLA VERSION

Straightforward, guided wizards that help you set up pre-defined types of rules. This is going to be the simplest way to allow you to set up simple notifications like price alerts, but it might not scale as well to more complex recipes. It might be the easiest place to start, though.

VERSION 2 - BUILD A MESSAGE VERSION

This version is inspired by the interface used in coding games like Scratch. The idea here is that you can type your own message, and drag and drop any available elements that Lettuce knows about (e.g. a portfolio total or account balance). 

We like this version for notifications, but think it might get a little too complex once Lettuce can do more than just send you notifications.

VERSION 3 - SHAREABLE RECIPES

The idea for this one would be for the community to be able to suggest financial strategies (e.g. "keep an emergency fund of 3 months expenses" or "maintain an asset allocation of 10% of your portfolio in gold" or "equally balance your portfolio between the 5 biggest crypto assets" which you can easily switch on or off. 

For now, you'll just get feedback telling you whether you're following those strategies or not, but in time, we'd want Lettuce to be able to actually execute some of them.

We'd love to hear from you which of these directions feel the most interesting, and what type of rules you might like to set up for yourself. 

Story 2: Better rounding rules

The problem

Right now, we've got an inconsistent set of rounding rules for numbers in the app, that many of you have told us are confusing. Often, we're rounding numbers to no decimals or just 2 decimals, but you'd like to see more detail than that. This is especially affecting our users with crypto portfolios.

The solution

We're working on a new set of rules about how to round numbers in the app, that we hope will strike a better balance between fidelity and simplicity.

 

What else?

There are a couple of small tweaks and improvements we're hoping to get to over the next few weeks. As always, we'll be keeping our assets database up to date (new stocks, funds and crypto assets appear and disappear every day), and squashing critical bugs as we find them. 

Profit and Loss, and the new Onboarding flow, are both still high on our list, and we promise we'll get to them as soon as we can. 

As always, we love your feedback! Keep telling us how we can make Lettuce the money management app of your dreams.