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Beat: Driver app registration funnel

Ride hailing is a super interesting industry and I had a unique opportunity to work at Beat, a company that focused on LATAM Markets with the aim of building the most popular mobility option in this area. It had over 25 million active passengers and 1 million active driver across all of their markets.

 

I was hired by Beat and relocated to Amsterdam in the end of 2021 and during my time there, I worked focused on the driver app, specially on the driver registration and later on, I worked with driver earnings. Registrations funnels are some of the most interesting things to test and experiment with, and we had successful and failures along the way. Here, I will share a bit of everything that we did in order to improve the registration experience for the driver.

The first stop: Zero riders
 User research 
 Interviews 
 Stakeholder alignment 
 Co-creations 
 UI Design 

Beat had a series of problems in the registration funnel. One of the major problems was that we had a big number of what we called "zero riders": users who went through all the registration process, got activated and never performed a ride. This number was around 25 - 35% depending on our market. These are drivers we already spent time and money on and yet, we could not motivate them to begin driving with Beat. One of my first steps in this project was mapping out all of the registration journey from a point of view of product, emotions and communications the driver received:

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After this, together with an UX Researcher, we ran a 2 months product discovery research in several of our markets - we needed to understand the reasons behind it and if they differed from market to market. After talking with over 30 drivers that fell into this  zero rider category in Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile, we realised that they all had the same main three problems:

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Many drivers were doing Ride Hailing for the first time and had basic questions that were not answered during the registration process.
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Drivers who worked with other ride hailing apps did not see the appeal in Beat and we did not promote any reason for them to focus on driving with us.
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Drivers who either had another job or worked with other apps felt no sense of urgency to start driving with Beat.

Since Beat was a huge company with a lot of different stakeholders, we presented our findings across several markets. I deeply believe in the power of co-creation to get to better solutions, so I also organised and facilitated some few workshops with different colleagues in order to think of ways to solve this issues we found. This was also a good opportunity to present some of the driver's personas our team have been working on through the past few months to other people in the company. Here is a small example of one of the workshops, focused on driver uncertainty:

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So many ideas came out of many discussions and workshops we had. Unfortunately we had to choose some of them to prioritise and work on, because it was impossible to solve all of the issues at once. We decided to focus on showing to the driver some basic answers to their questions during the registration process and also showing some of the reasons why they should drive with Beat, but also fix some other issues along the way:

New registration process
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Our registration process was very direct to the point - almost a little rude to the user. We asked for their data without even saying hi or explaining what was gonna happen, validated their phone number and right away started asking for their documents. We also had some other problems that we decided to improve on:

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Pin Issue: We had a huge problem with a lot of pins not being delivered to drivers and passengers after they registered their phone, and for that reason they could not validate their account. Together with the Fraud&Safety team, we discovered that most cases where this happened - around 72% - were due to incorrect typing of the phone number. We decided to do a simple test where we offered the user a pop up suggesting their phone number when they clicked on the input component. The goal was to get to a conversion rate of 90% from downloaded to verified pin. Right before launching this new feature, this rate was at 85%, and within the first month it reached 90% as per our OKR. 

Why drive with Beat? In between validating the pin and asking for the driver's documents, we decided to add two screens that offered some informations on why drive with Beat. This was user tested and we had to do some changes in content and images. We were very surprised to discover that some of the drivers thought that what we showed them was real rides or real earnings - since they already offered us some data, like their phone, they somehow thought they were already registered and could accept rides. After iterating on the screen, we got to a result where users remembered that they could earn on both credit card and cash rides (which was very important to them) and that we verified our passengers, so they felt more safe and curious about using Beat.

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In this image, you can see the process of some of the onboarding screens - the final one in the right was one of the most appealing for drivers, because safety was usually one of the main worries most of the drivers had and saying that we verified passengers and they could accept the rides only of they wanted to gave them a sense of autonomy and pushed them through the registration funnel.

Document list: Around 60% of the drivers that registered their phone number with us would quit the registration funnel at the first document upload screen. One of the strong hypothesis that local markets had was that this was due to them not expecting to be asked for documents right away. They also were obliged to upload documents in a specific order and would lose their process in case they stopped in the middle and came back later. So we added a screen explaining what would happen next with a list of documents that they could upload in the order they preferred.

This feature was tested in one market through an A/B test and had mixed results:

 

The good results is that this diminished our issues with drivers uploading the wrong documents - we saw a decrease of 23% in wrong documents being uploaded. We also were surprised to see a slight impact in the number of zero riders, around of 4% less zero riders while we tested this screen.  Our main hypothesis is that people who went through the process had more intention of actually becoming drivers. 

 

The bad results is that this screen made people take longer to register. Since our registering process before was all in one go and people had to upload their documents in a specific order, they would usually just do it all at once or give up on the way and never come back. This screen allowed users to upload documents in the order they preferred and this increased the time they took to actually finish the process.

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FAQ: At the end of the registration process we added an FAQ with the most common questions we heard during our zero rider research - such as "How do I start driving" and "How much money can I make?". The content of those screens was validated through usability tests and we had an UX writer working alongside with use to make sure we got to the best result possible. Unfortunately, this FAQ feature was never launched and tested in the real product. In the image above, you can see what the driver used to see when he finished uploading his documents in the first screen and what was the new proposal we tested in the second screen:

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Small changes, big impact
 User research 
 Interviews 
 Ux writing 

Beat had a huge gap in the registration funnel between people who downloaded the driver app, registered their phone number and actually moved on with the registration. This could be due to several issues: Bad UX, bad UI, people were just curious and had no real intention of driving, steps on the registration funnel were missing, they might not have been willing to upload documents without a proper explanation on why we are asking them...

 

With so many hypothesis and options, we decided to do a small research via calls to users that fell into this specific demographic: Downloaded the driver app, registered their phone and never uploaded any document. This was done together with the UX research team and the CX team from two local markets. We called over 60 drivers and ran a small structured interview to investigate the reasons. Here are the findings:
 

Around 35% of them downloaded the wrong app by mistake - they thought that this was the passenger app and their intention was to become a passenger, not a driver. This was a pretty serious mistake because once an user entered our registration  funnel we would spend a considerable amount of money in each market with SMS and Whatsapp messages trying to convert them into drivers. So not only we were losing passengers, we were also wasting money in the wrong users.

We were left to figure out why people were downloading the wrong app - the passenger app usually came up first in the search and it didn't seem to make sense. That's when we realised it:
the names of the apps were a little misleading. Doing a little bit more digging and some few user interviews, we realised that a lot of people downloaded the app "Beat Driver" thinking that this was the app they needed to download in order to get a driver. Beat for passengers, in the other hand, was called "Beat - rides", which seemed to be the main point of conflict, specially because the name was in English though all of our markets were Spanish speakers. Though it seems like a small thing, I can not stress enough how wording and content tends to be the make or break part of something functioning well. Therefore, we decided to change it. 

Our driver app changed his name to "Beat for drivers" while the passenger changed his name to "Beat for passengers".
This had a
huge impact in our funnel.

Downloads in the driver app diminished drastically, as we expected, in around 22% - however, this gave us a way more clean funnel and had an impact of 12% increase on our conversion from downloaded to all documents uploaded. This also had a small impact of around 7% less zero riders.

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