Mar 22, 2013 KV Kiva HQ
By Martin Butt
What's new on Kiva 3/22: Social sharing, wish lists, loan alerts and more
The last update to the Kiva website is what we call an Innovation Iteration -- the engineers got to vote on the projects they wanted to work on. The results include some fun and interesting improvements to the site.

Social Share Buttons
We've made sharing great loans with your networks even easier by adding social share buttons to loan profile pages. Now you can share borrower stories easily on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

Loan Wish List
Have you seen a great loan you want to remember? You can now “star” a loan and add it to your wish list by clicking on the star icon next to the borrower’s name on a loan profile page. You can find your wish list by logging in, going to, and clicking on “My List” in the sidebar to the left.

Fundraising Loans on Lender Maps
In addition to loans you’ve already made, it's now possible to see fundraising loans on the maps that appear on your Lender page. Just choose 'Map View' of your loans on the My Portfolio page.

Saved Searches
Being able to save a search has been a long sought-after feature. So we've built a version with a few limitations. This was a first try and we’d love to hear your feedback. If you do a text search for a loan and get 0 results, you will now see a button to “Get Alerts" when more loans become available.

Once you sign up, whenever new loans matching your search are posted, you’ll get an email alert.

Kiva Zip lona on
Our latest Kiva City, Kiva City Little Rock, has an interesting new feature. We're showing both traditional loans and Kiva Zip loans! Now we can show Zip loans anywhere easily on the main Kiva site.

Open-Source Projects
Here at Kiva, we rely heavily on open-source software to build our infrastructure. Open-source software is freely distributed and allows Kiva to keep its costs down. We've been exploring different ways we can give back to this great community -- and now we can! There's now a list of our open source projects on our developer site. If you are a software developer, why not download them, take a look and even send a pull-request?

Have questions about changes to Kiva's website? Send them our way at!


For the "saved searches" In additon to key words would like to be able to get alerts for specific countries. Great innovations this month.

That's a good suggestion, for now you can search for a country using the search box and if there are not any loans for it, set up an alert for that search, which will work in much the same way that a future feature would work for country alerts only. So, don't be afraid to set a saved search up now :)

I wanted to set up an alert by country, also, but I can't seem to find a way to do it. If I text search for something like "astronaut" I get the option to subscribe to an alert for that keyword, but putting something like "Belize" in that box doesn't return that option. I love that you're working on alerts, though! I've been wanting them forever. Any hints on how I might adjust my strategy to get country alerts would be appreciated. Cheers!

Yeah currently one cannot get an alert by country, it requires some further work, it only keys on words in the loan descriptions currently. That said, stay tuned, some work is happening right now to make it work for country alerts as well.

Hi, A very minor suggestion on the "star" feature: It was a little confusing at first to tell whether I had starred a loan because nothing happens when you click it (it just shows the hover state), you have to move the mouse off to see that it's starred. I would recommend 2 hover states, one for unstarred (which might be a highlighted gray) and then one for starred. Regards, Sean

Hey Sean, nice to see you here on the comments section! Yeah I was a bit rushed on the CSS for this, but that's a good suggestion. I'll see if I can incorporate it when I come back to this.

Hi, A little tweak might be needed to the country search for South Africa. At the moment it shows you loans for the geographical region of the south of Africa rather then just those for a loan. Any update on the alert function for country searches? I would find that really useful!

I might build out that feature, but it's a lot more complex than the initial saved search alert function I built, so we'll see. Will definitely let the lender community know when I get it done though.

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Martin joined Kiva in January 2012. Born and raised in London, England, Martin has been writing software from an early age; dropping out of high school to work as a web developer at now Reuters owned Complinet. He returned to education and attainted his BSc in Computer Science from the University of Reading. He worked in a number of engineering and product management roles on high traffic websites before his entrepreneurial spirit took him in a new direction. He owned and operated a mobile catering van, a web development and online marketing agency and a number of tech startups that utilized his homegrown geo-location platform.

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