Comparing Financial Calculators Options

January 1, 1970

This article is written specifically for Banks, Credit Unions, Mortgage Lenders, and Insurance companies who are looking to increase revenue and provide a better Customer Experience by using online calculators.

Not sure if you need to upgrade the calculators on your website? 5 Signs You've Outgrown Your Financial Calculators.

If you are evaluating different options for financial calculators, you've come to the right place. In this guide, we'll break down the options you have to get calculators live on your website.

Key Things To Consider: DO's and DON'Ts

Before we dive into each individual option, a few DO's and DON'Ts for your evaluation.

  • Do insist on measuring ROI and conversions - You should always be able to easily measure the ROI of digital tools (link)
  • Don't publish calculators using iFrames - Google's own webmaster says, you should not publish display content on your website using iFrames (see why)
  • Do focus on branding, usability UX/UI, mobile-first responsive design, and ADA compliance standards.
  • Don't rely on a back-end developer to manage every aspect of your calculators (link)
  • Do focus on your ability to easily customize your calculators - and keep an eye out for any additional integrations you might want down the road.
  • Don't get delayed with complex code files that take your developers weeks or months to customize for your brand
  • Do look for support in the form of help desk articles, customer service, and things like email and live chat.

Your Options for Financial Calculators

Ok now that we have the non-negotiables out of the way, here is an in-depth look at your options.

Option One: Building Your Own Financial Calculators

First the 6-figure question...should you build them in-house or purchase them from a vendor? While there are many factors to consider...the cost, ongoing maintenance, and complexities of interactive tools make financial calculators an ideal candidate to outsource to an expert. 

"What’s the opportunity cost in regards to time, energy, effort, and talent when you try to create something from scratch?"

James Robert Lay, Digital Growth Institute

Here are a few key questions to ask when considering building new financial calculators - see the full article here.

  • Project Scope: How big is this entire project actually going to be from ideation and planning meetings to go-live?
  • Time to Value: How quickly will we be able to go-live and show measurable value?
  • Overall Cost: How much is this project actually going to cost all together?
  • Maintenance: How confident are you in the team's ability to stay up to date on the functionality of our calculators?
  • Opportunity Cost: What else could you spend our time doing instead of this project?
  • Customization: How much control do you need over the customization?

“Most institutions outsource their financial calculators in order to benefit from some of the key features that users expect – a modern user experience, mobile responsive, ADA conformance, search engine friendly and use of the latest technology.”

Michelle Brown, ZAG Interactive

Option Two: Working with a Vendor

The truth is building financial calculators is expensive and challenging for whoever builds them but vendors are often able to distribute the development costs across a base of clients and pass the savings onto their clients.

Here are the top options for getting financial calculators on your website.

Chimney Started in 2019, Chimney launched the calculator industry's first no-code platform to help digital teams easily launch java-script based calculators on any page of their website.

Dinkytown Started nearly 20 years ago with the largest library in the industry, Dinkytown pioneered the practice of sending iFrame code files to clients to get calculators live on financial websites.

Alternative to Dinkytown (link)

Leadfusion Started 20 years ago and focused on the enterprise, Leadfusion publishes calculators using iFrames mainly focused on larger Banks.

Alternative to Leadfusion (link)

Fintactix Started 15 years ago by a former Leadfusion employee, Fintactix offers a library of calculators built on iFrames, focused mainly on Banks and Credit Unions.

Alternative to Fintactix (link)

CalcXML Started in 2010, CalcXML offers java-script based calculators across 4 major financial categories.

Alternative to CalcXML (link)

So how are all these companies different? Below we break down each of the key components.

Here is a helpful side by side spreadsheet you can download to help compare your options for financial calculators.

Hopefully by now you've gathered that there are quite a few differences.

At Chimney, we're always investing in R&D and the success of our clients.

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