Improve user journey for unauthorized charges


Content Strategist

Time frame

10 weeks


TUI analysis




Unauthorized charges are charges that users find in their bank statements that they don't know who made. This is one of the highest user issues for Google Play.

User goals

  • To make sure they don't have to pay for these charges. 
  • To remove the charges from their statements.

Business goals

  • To help users resolve these charges. 
  • To gain trust by helping users resolve financial issues. 


78% of the users reporting unauthorized charges are users who are actually reporting charges made by their family and friends. 


If a user reports similar cases using the unauthorized form, they end up:

  • Flagging their account and losing the ability to pay
  • Flagging the accounts of their family and friends



We found that:

  • Users don’t know what “unauthorized charges” are and would be unlikely to use that term to search.
  • Users would typically just want to “contact Google” when they get a charge they don’t recognize. 
  • Linking to the form at the top made it easy for users to see and click, without reading the content
  • Users don’t see the correct form under Step 2
  • Making changes to the form would take too long




Reorganized the “Report unauthorized charges” help content to guide the user better:

  • Changed the title to be easier to read, and search for.
  • Incorporated keywords like “contact Google,” “billing statement,” “unknown charges” (eventually vetoed by legal).
  • Created a way for users to be able to select their situation before they can actually find a solution. This made the user journey longer - but provided a way for users to consciously understand where they are going and lead them to the right place.
  • Moved the form to report issues correctly under each zippy. 
  • Worked with privacy and legal to make sure language was accurate and within legal boundaries. 

We also worked to reorganize the contact us form so users would access this article before they even get to file the form.