Viewpoint: Designing financial products for women
By Abhishek Gupta, Akhand Tiwari
Marketers from a growing range of industries have gone to great lengths to create consumer markets that are segmented along gender lines—from soaps to two-wheel vehicles to vacation packages. However, financial services providers (FSPs) remain largely oblivious to the needs of women.
Across the globe, a billion women remain financially excluded, with a gender gap of 9% persisting stubbornly in developing countries. Further, the 2017 Global Findex survey conducted by the World Bank found that in India, while the gender gap in access to bank accounts has decreased to 6% from 20%, the percentage of women who are active users (35%) is less than that of men at 47%. Poor financial product design for women contributes to this.
The micro-credit movement brought these women into the formal financial fold for the first time, with loans and passbooks issued in their names. But they were not necessarily considered active consumers of financial services.
Photo courtesy of Maria Andersson.