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10 Aug 2017

Survey Says? The YNAB Mobile App Makes You a Better Budgeter.

Below Read More
by Shannon Marie

Find out how, plus the features our testers loved the most ...

We recently conducted an internal survey to see what the YNAB team likes best about our new mobile app. The answer is, unsurprisingly, “budgeting”. Sounds like snark, but yeah, we really mean it.

… and if you’ve ever found yourself less-than-current with your budget, you’ll probably understand where we’re coming from. I mean, who among us hasn’t forgotten to enter a few transactions that later muddle the bank reconciliation? Or overspent because you thought you could cover it, only to realize that, yeah, no. Oops!

It turns out that, when you’re fully able to manage your budget on the go, you totally will. And the payoff is peace of mind and better budgeting results.

Is the New App Truly Full-Featured?

It’s not just hype. If you can do it on YNAB’s web-based app, now you can do it on your phone, too. It’s a simple fact, but the effect is shockingly big. Dylan, a UI/UX designer, said, “This can’t be overstated: I can do everything on my phone that I used to do on the web … I helped design the thing and this surprised me!”

He’s not alone. 50% of survey respondents said they love being able to do “everything” on their phone, citing increased awareness (39%) and more control (26%).

Alan, UI/UX designer, said, “Before, I would make adjustments to my budget maybe once a week. I would fall off the wagon and have to spend a lot of time getting caught up—or do a fresh start, depending on how bad I was. [Now] I’m staying on top of things daily, making adjustments and decisions.”

Now, we know you must be thinking, “But you’re Team YNAB! Of course you love the new app!” It’s true, we’ve got YNAB spirit (yes, we do!) … but did you know that 82% of us used and loved YNAB before we started working here?

And, if you doubt that you’d ever really want to manage your entire budget from your phone, keep reading.

Would You, Could You, on Your Phone?

The answer is, “Yes, you totally could.” and, based on our survey results, there’s a good chance you will. 42% of respondents said they use the new mobile app more than they used the old one. Let’s take a look at a few features that won them over:

Direct Import, Direct Impact

Over one-third (34%) of the team listed direct import as their favorite feature of the new app, and nearly half (47%) mentioned that direct import really helped them trust in their budget. Dan, a customer support representative, said, “Yes! Having the most up-to-date transactions (shout-out to mobile direct import) is a game-changer, especially when you’re debating priorities while you’re actually out making the purchase!”

Not sure direct import is your cup of tea? Elena, a customer support representative, said, “I’ve been proudly 100% manual entry all along, but the new mobile app has me dipping my toe into direct import in a way that I never felt inclined to with the desktop app. I’m not sure why that is, but kind of interesting behavior!”

We think we might know why, Elena—and suspect the answer could be that, with the ease of direct import, you still have full control with …

Transaction Matching!

Because what good is direct import, if you can’t organize those bank transactions neatly into your budget categories? Not much, that’s what!

Transaction matching puts the control back in your hands and is well summed up by Ben, a teacher at YNAB. Ben said, “The manual matching on mobile is super slick! I love how it gives you suggestions of transactions that are close to the same amount.”

Sherri, a teacher at YNAB said, “ … just imported and matched transactions while sitting in a parked car!” (See? You can budget anywhere!)

And Overspending? 100% Preventable.

So there you are, staring at a store shelf. Can you buy this? Should you wait? The answer is literally in the palm of your hand. And if you consult the YNAB app to discover that you don’t have enough budgeted, you can move dollars from another category on the spot!

Todd, CCO, said, “It’s funny, even though the mobile app was always perfect for entry on-the-go, I’m actually much more likely to do that now. [Now] I can cover overspending or re-budget, right there, instead of needing to finish up or catch up later [on the desktop app]. I definitely did not expect that more entry on-the-go would be my most noticeable behavior change.”

When asked what his favorite aspect of the new mobile app is, Dave, a teacher at YNAB, said, “Being able to move money to preempt overspending—in other words, being able to find the money first …” (Pst. He’s an expert on the topic, and there’s a blog post to prove it.)

Whether you’re mindfully moving money, or covering a slip-up, it’s easy to see how the new mobile app can help you up your budgeting game.

Alert! Your Budget Needs You!

And the most surprising find from the survey? Team YNAB loves alerts. See what they had to say …

Kari, a customer support representative, said, “You know when you get a gift you didn’t even know you always wanted? That’s how I felt when I saw ‘To Be Budgeted’ in the new mobile app. I was convinced I would still prefer budgeting for the month in the web app. (Okay, maybe in the iPad app.) On payday, that green banner grabbed my attention. Before I knew it, every dollar had a job—and I was still in bed.”

And Jen, a customer support representative, said, “I love that my YNAB app now reminds me with a red dot and a banner when I have overspent … or [ if there are new] transactions to import. It keeps me engaged with my budget, and helps me keep my budget accurate up-to-the-minute.”

See, alerts are fun! I mean, who doesn’t like a current budget? (That’s how you find financial peace … or wiggle room for a new pair of shoes. What? Shh.)

You’ll Be a Better Budgeter. Try It, You’ll See.

The key takeaways from our survey were delightfully in keeping with YNAB’s Four Rules, as noted by Jannelle, a customer support representative. She said, “I love how much more control I have. The YNAB way is to help you align your money with your priorities, and now the mobile app reflects that same intent!”

And isn’t that the point? We love the new app (clearly), but the real win is about transforming the way you budget so that you can transform your life! With your budget in your pocket, it’s easy to …

Be More Engaged!

All those features? They lure you into the app and encourage you to hang out, accomplishing more budgeting on the fly. The net effect? Less time budgeting overall, but more real-time interaction. Jason, a customer support representative, said, “[I find that I do] more frequent and faster budgeting … it’s helping me keep way more on top of things on a daily basis.”

And that interaction? It leads to …

More Awareness & Control!

April, a customer support representative, said, “I found myself thinking about my priorities more often while I was out and about. Waiting for my kid in dance class? Whip out my phone and consider what I need to save for next summer’s camps.”

And Jason said, “I’m checking category balances more to help guide my spending and decision-making. I’ve actually avoided eating out a few times in the last couple of weeks because of this, which is a big win … Because I can now budget, approve transactions, cover overspending and move money around so much easier … I know that my budget is more accurate in real-time, so I’m giving it more weight in making those decisions … “

More Peace of Mind (and Fun?)

If you’ve ever been anxious about money, you’ll appreciate this: Justin, a customer support technical lead, said, “I thought my budget was already really boring, but being able to budget in a free moment (quickly and easily!) made it even more boring! That definitely surprised me, that I could take my snoozefest budget to another level of boring.”

… boring money translates to financial stability. I’d call that fun!

And Faness, a customer support representative, summed it up best when she said, “Joy, excitement, fun—what’s a good word for repeatedly shoving an app in your spouse’s face?”

We Think You’ll Love Budgeting, Mobile-Style, Too …

The three reasons you should try out the new app today?

  1. The new mobile app will do everything but applaud you, when you finally pay off your credit card—but if you write to us, we’ll be sure to extend our congratulations!
  2. It’s pretty and easy to use.
  3. When you can budget anywhere, you will—and your financial peace and happiness are sure to follow!

Try it for yourself (free for 34 days), and let us know what you love best!

Related Articles

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August 7, 2017 | by Lindsey Burgess

Party Like It’s 2017 (and We Launched a New...

August 8, 2017 | by Shannon Marie

The New Mobile App Is out in the Wild!

August 9, 2017 | by Jesse Mecham

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