Stripe cracks down on scammers but mistakenly freezes out innocent users

Matt Miller
Customer Success Manager
April 17, 2024

Stripe is in the news a lot, especially in the form of speculation about a potential IPO. But a tender offer announced at the end of February gave employees a liquidity opportunity, and may signal that the IPO is still some ways off. The company continues expanding its offerings beyond its core payment processing service and is gradually re-growing its valuation, which now stands at $65 billion, having been cut to $50 billion in 2023 from a previous high of $95 billion.

So, let’s all take a deep breath, put the IPO out of our minds for the moment… and dig into some of their customer feedback.

Stripe’s wealth of multi-modal customer feedback

At Enterpret, we are in the business of customer feedback, and sometimes we like to play around with public data to see what we can learn. Stripe has a wealth of public customer feedback online through app store reviews and social media posts. We started by ingesting data from five sources – Twitter, Reddit, Google Play Store, Apple App Store, and G2.

Enterpret has direct integrations with these sources, so it’s simple. Many of our customers value the ease with which they can analyze data from their various sources, using our straightforward analytical tools to get a deeper perspective on customer outcomes.

Insights in a snap with Wisdom - the AI Copilot for customer insights

To understand what Stripe customer are saying, we started digging in with Wisdom, our AI Copilot for customer insights. Wisdom is the fastest way to surface insights in Stripe's public feedback set without any knowledge about the themes or topics Stripe customers care about most.

There's is a lot of positive feedback for Stripe. Stripe has been transformative for businesss big and small. Customers love the usefulness of the platform, the superior design quality, and the Stripe team.

On the flip side, we wanted to see what might not be clicking at Stripe. So, we asked Wisdom to "Please summarize the top issues that customers are complaining about."

This is the summary Wisdom generated - which I was able to copy and paste the full summary with one click. (Annotations have been removed for easy scanning)

Stripe customers are experiencing a range of issues, from account handling and customer support problems to unexpected refunds and unauthorized transactions. These issues are causing significant financial and operational disruptions, leading to a loss of trust in the service.

  • Account Handling and Customer Support Issues: Users have reported an Issue With Account Suspension(2220 Records), with their accounts being closed and funds withheld for extended periods They have also expressed dissatisfaction with the lack of transparency and poor customer support in these situations. Additionally, users have reported an Issue With Funds Holding(2167 Records), with Stripe's platform being accused of automatically putting accounts at high risk and withholding funds without clear reasons.
  • Financial Disruptions: Users have reported an Issue With Payout Delays(338 Records), with some users experiencing delays in receiving their payouts, leading to financial strain They have also reported an Issue With Unexpected Refunds(140 Records), with their accounts being frozen and significant business information being requested, leading to the inability to refund their clients.
  • Unauthorized Transactions and Trust Issues: Users have reported an Issue With Unauthorized Money Transactions(136 Records), expressing frustration and concern about their accounts being at risk of being closed and their money being taken. These issues have led to a significant Issue With Trust In Service(108 Records), with users expressing strong dissatisfaction and a lack of trust in Stripe's business practices and customer service.

Digging in deeper: G2 ratings vs App Ratings

We wanted understand other ways customers feel about Stripe by looking at feedback from different sources. In Enterpret, it’s easy to segment G2 and App Store Ratings and see how different apps perform overall and over time. Here are a few examples:

Average G2 Ratings of several of Stripe’s products

Average ratings over time for Android and iOS Dashboard apps

The trend shows that the Stripe Android Play Store App consistently outperforms the iOS App Store ratings. (We love to see a company that give their Android Apps love!)

Uncovering “locked accounts” and “frozen funds” dominate public feedback

Typically, when we do these public data exercises, we find a variety of interesting angles to explore – this bug or that usability issue.

With Stripe, one area of feedback completely dominated: locked accounts, frozen funds, and the challenge of getting help to resolve those issues.

Looking at the source breakdown, we can see this trend was mostly driven by Twitter. Digging in further reveals a couple of viral threads in which one prominent user fell afoul of Stripe’s account controls, and their followers piled on in the replies.

It’s a bit difficult to figure out which of these complaints are from innocent users wrongly caught by some automated trigger and which are scammers grumpy about the penalties for violating terms of service signed but never read. You might raise an eyebrow when you see a user (who openly identifies as a drop-shipper in their bio) complaining about unfair account moderation. And it’s easy to be skeptical about users who complain about their legitimate enterprises but refuse to give more detail than they are “in the packaging business.”

Separating the Stripe scammers from the innocent

Enterpret makes it easy to filter large volumes of data based on specific metadata or keywords. In the case of Stripe, this can be helpful when trying to identify real users impacted based on keywords, looking at the feedback by source, or anomaly reports.

Here are some of the more convincing cases we surfaced:

But one thing is certain: Stripe’s customer support is overwhelmed by all of the requests, and it’s very hard for users, legitimate or not, to get in touch with someone who can help.

Companies that handle payments operate in a strict regulatory environment, so it’s understandable. But mistakes happen—Venmo once held my friend’s payment for our dinner outing for a week because she wrote “Syrian” in the memo.

Organizations like Stripe can benefit from having a feedback infrastructure to sort out issues for people who didn’t violate rules. Enterpret is helping some of the best product companies optimize customer experiences with feedback. See how we’re helping:

If you’re a team (or someone at Stripe) that wants to discuss how Enterpret can help you make the most of your customer feedback, get in touch!

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We are laser-focused on giving customers more than they expect through a hospitality-first, individualized approach to drive retention and loyalty. Enterpret has allowed us to stitch together a full picture of the customer, including feedback and reviews from multiple data points. We now can super-serve our loyal customers in a way that we have never been able to before.
Anna Esrov
Vice President of Customer Experience & Loyalty
Enterpret allowed us to listen to specific issues and come closer to our Members - prioritizing feedback which needed immediate attention, when it came to monitoring reception of new releases: Enterpret picked up insights for new updates and became the eyes of whether new systems and functionality were working well or not.
Louise Sellars
Analyst, Customer Insights
Enterpret is one of the most powerful tools in our toolkit. It's very Member-friendly. We've been able to share how other teams can modify and self-serve in Enterpret. It's bridged a gap to getting access to Member feedback, and I see all our teams finding ways to use Enterpret to answer Member-related questions.
Dina Mohammad-Laity
VP of Data
The big win-win is our VoC program enabled us to leverage our engineering resources to ship significantly awesome and valuable features while minimizing bug fixes and" keep the lights on" work. Magnifying and focusing on the 20% that causes the impact is like finding the needle in a haystack, especially when you have issues coming from all over the place
Abishek Viswanathan
Since launching our Voice of Customer program six months ago, our team has dropped our human inquiry rate by over 40%, improved customer satisfaction, and enabled our team to allocate resources to building features that increase LTV and revenue.
Abishek Viswanathan
Enterpret's Gong Integration is a game changer on so many levels. The automated labeling of feedback saves dozens of hours per week. This is essential in creating a customer feedback database for analytics.
Michael Bartimer
Revenue Operations Lead
Enterpret has made it so much easier to understand our customer feedback. Every month I put together a Voice of Customer report on feedback trends. Before Enterpret it would take me two weeks - with Enterpret I can get it done in 3 days.
Maya Bakir
Product Operations, Notion
The Enterpret platform is like the hero team of data analysts you always wanted - the ability to consolidate customer feedback from diverse touch points and identify both ongoing and emerging trends to ensure we focus on and build the right things has been amazing. We love the tools and support to help us train the results to our unique business and users and the Enterpret team is outstanding in every way.
Larisa Sheckler
COO, Samsung Food
Enterpret makes it easy to understand and prioritize the most important feedback themes. Having data organized in one place, make it easy to dig into the associated feedback to deeply understand the voice of customer so we can delight users, solve issues, and deliver on the most important requests.
Lauren Cunningham
Head of Support and Ops
With Enterpret powering Voice of Customer we're democratizing feedback and making it accessible for everyone across product, customer success, marketing, and leadership to provide evidence and add credibility to their strategies and roadmaps.
Michael Nguyen
Head of Research Ops and Insights, Figma
Boll & Branch takes pride in being a data driven company and Enterpret is helping us unlock an entirely new source of data. Enterpret quantifies our qualitative data while still keeping customer voice just a click away, adding valuable context and helping us get a more complete view of our customers.
Matheson Kuo
Senior Product Analyst, Boll & Branch
Enterpret has transformed our ability to use feedback to prioritize customers and drive product innovation. By using Enterpret to centralize our data, it saves us time, eliminates manual tagging, and boosts accuracy. We now gain near real-time insights, measure product success, and easily merge feedback categories. Enterpret's generative AI technology has streamlined our processes, improved decision-making, and elevated customer satisfaction
Nathan Yoon
Business Operations,
Enterpret helps us have a holistic view from our social media coverage, to our support tickets, to every single interaction that we're plugging into it. Beyond just keywords, we can actually understand: what are the broader sentiments? What are our users saying?
Emma Auscher
Global VP of Customer Experience, Notion
The advantage of Enterpret is that we’re not relying entirely on human categorization. Enterpret is like a second brain that is looking out for themes and trends that I might not be thinking about.
Misty Smith
Head of Product Operations, Notion
As a PM, I want to prioritize work that benefits as many of our customers as possible. It can be too easy to prioritize based on the loudest customer or the flavor of the moment. Because Enterpret is able to compress information across all of our qualitative feedback sources, I can make decisions that are more likely to result in positive outcomes for the customer and our business.
Duncan Stewart
Product Manager
We use Enterpret for our VoC & Root Cause Elimination Program - Solving the issues of aggregating disparate sources of feedback (often tens of thousands per month) and distilling it into specific reasons, with trends, so we can see if our product fixes are reducing reasons.
Nathan Yoon
Business Operations,