We know why Monzo hasn’t provided them.
That answer is from Feb 2016 and doesn’t really stand up to scrutiny, I’m not sure it’s worth looking at any more. The main points:
- If you use more than 1 tag per transaction (for example, a meal could be #lunch and #food) then we couldn’t give you easy comparison tools because the totals per tag wouldn’t add up.
They’re already plannng tagging things with two categories at once (expenses, holidays), so that part of the answer has been contradicted by Monzo themselves.
- If we let you create custom categories then we can’t aggregate transactions in a meaningful way. It would be much harder to send you reports and insights. We wouldn’t be able to tell you “hey, people similar to you are spending a 20% less on this category than you”
I do have some sympathy with this - it’s easier to work with data if it is consistent across customers (though the paucity of categories makes misclassification a real problem). To address that several people have suggested custom subcategories or allowing multiple tags.
I guess hashtags could work too, if they worked as categories do, not just text labels for search. Frustrating the lack of engagement with the community on this - Monzo simply isn’t listening to what people are asking for, instead slowly reinventing categories one piece at a time.
Since it appears this is Monzo’s answer to custom categories , please can we have automatic tagging based on previous classifications and include this in breakdown - very few people are going to go and tag all their data by hand on an ongoing basis. If that’s in the plans, it’d be nice to know.
The tag should autocreate a bullet point under the category, like a subsection. All displayed clearly on the spending tab
hmm, sort of like a subcategory
I suggested something similar to this on the “MONZO for Android - Release Notes (v1.25.0)” thread with a few pictures suggesting how it could be done: Monzo for Android - Release Notes (v1.25.0).
Also mentioned how the order of searching for tags matters, which it shouldn’t.
Having to go back and add tags manually is especially frustating since clicking on the “Notes” section of a transaction resets a search back to the beginning every time, which has become incredibly annoying.
NB: mentioned in Point 3 here: Monzo for Android - Release Notes (v1.25.0)
This is the first version of tags. I hope it will become more sophisticated in the future. Please bear with us!
The reasons my team haven’t pursued this are complex. In essence it would exponentially increase the difficulty of building many of the upcoming features we have (thus delaying them unnecessarily). It could also, as Hugo explained, cause confusion for customers.
The ability for us to reliably categorise all incoming transactions is extremely important, and not to be underestimated. Custom categories could add significant complexity and ambiguity, and significantly hinder our ability to do automatic categorisation on your behalf. We are worried that this would weaken the usefulness of some features (including some unreleased ones), and compromise their accuracy.
We think it’s better to have a core suite of categories (which we are adding to!) and take advantage of tags to allow you to group transactions arbitrarily and get custom insights that way.
Hope this makes sense.
I have IOS
Can I have a note AND a #tag on a transaction? If so which should come first?
Yep you can have both and the order should not matter.
Thanks for taking the time to explain. Glad to hear tags may evolve into something more sophisticated.
It may be helpful to compare with Tide, who offer custom categories and it works well. At the start of using the bank, I set up my custom categories, I then tagged transactions as they came in, and it simply remembered which tags were used in the past for a payer or payee and used them again. Nothing fancy but very useful. This is how lots of accounting software works too. If you did have user categories, it’s to be expected that any auto tagging would be extremely simple like this. I appreciate you want to use complex rules for the main ones and that will evolve and also you don’t want 20 similar rent tags across customers.
Given that monzo wants to control/auto-assign all main categories, personally I’d prefer subcategories to tags (which avoid the problems you outline too), but tags could work, if they are treated more as categories are, not manual tag and search.
If tags did a simple classify based on last use, and were displayed under breakdown they would address most of what people are asking for when they say custom categories.
The order does matter @kieranmch (at least on Android)
Thanks for the info - iOS seems to support notes before the tags!
Do you know if the iOS search is insensitive to order of tags too @kieranmch ?
(eg: If tag for a transaction is “#alpha #beta”, then searching for “#beta #alpha” produces the transaction too)
Did you see my comment above about tags not being able to include a
- on Android? Should be a small fix
It hasn’t mattered for me
Sorry, I think I slightly misunderstood. Putting “alpha #beta” or “#beta alpha” in the notes makes no difference when searching just “#beta” (both show up). However if you put “alpha #beta” in the notes and then search “#beta alpha” the transaction doesn’t show up.
I guess this falls under the insensitivity to order when searching tags issue.
is that because your auto correct is changing a short - into a long – when you type?
Would you not be searching for just #beta as the tag though?
I thought I understood what you said and then I couldn’t. That is entirely on me