Podcast: The consumer view of a cashless society & the payments proposition in an ever-changing landscape


Victoria Bateman, General Manager for EMEA, RFi Group, presented at the inaugural Women in Payments Symposium in London. Victoria caught up with Adelle Grisaffe, Producer of the Global Digital Banker podcast to discuss the insights from her presentation.

Key discussion points included the current state of the global payments landscape, consumer perceptions around a cashless society, the drivers behind this cashless transition and the products that consumers say they will be using instead of cash. Referenced in the presentation is data captured from the half a million consumer interviews that RFi Group run annually across the global, relating specifically to the changing payments landscape.

To listen to this interview and the entire Global Digital Banker podcast episode for this week, please click here

With regards to the changing landscape, what is the current state of the global payments landscape, particularly around cash usage?

“From a global perspective, we looked into our Global Digital Banking Study which we run every 6 months, it’s a really nice mix of markets, including Australia, Canada, China, France, Hong Kong, India, Mexico, Singapore, the UK and the US, all at different stages of development, and all very diverse ecosystems. The latest data tells us that 15% of consumers globally had not used cash at all in the last 12 months, and that metric is fairly consistent across markets and at its highest across India and Singapore. There are also some really interesting generational differences for that particular metric.”

From here Victoria was able to share a breakdown of those statistics and where the numbers stand when it comes to user intent and payment preferences.

“The question we ask here is, do consumers intend to use all of the different payments methods that they use over the next 12 months. Across every one of those markets, there is an anticipated negative net change for cash and a positive net change for credit and debit and those preferences vary depending on the market that you look at. In some markets, the net change for credit is significantly higher than debit and it could be the reverse in another market.”

Everything from cash and traditional payment methods, right through to emerging payment methods were discussed and it was evident from this that there are some stark generational differences when it comes to consumers preferences across card usage, cheques and mobile wallets in the UK.

Victoria also explained payments usage across a wide range of scenarios, everything from low-value purchases to big-ticket items, both online and offline. When it came to the big question of what proportion of global consumers can envision a cashless society, interestingly, the majority of those that said that they can envision this, stated that they think it will happen in the next 5 years.

"75% of consumers who can envision a cashless society say that they believe debit will replace cash, but the strongest jumps in terms of wave on wave changes in the data are for credit and mobile wallets."

When asked about what preferred mediums consumers will use to pay instead of cash, Victoria stated that “75% of consumers who can envision a cashless society say that they believe debit will replace cash, but the strongest jumps in terms of the wave on wave changes in the data are for credit and mobile wallets."

Victoria went on to further break down consumer expectations of alternative payment methods, who they expect to provide these alternative payment methods, barriers to usage and what incentives providers could roll out to drive usage and acquisition.

“One of the biggest things that will ultimately drive this cashless transition is that rate of technology adoption and that’s interesting because it takes generation out of the equation as well”

“One of the biggest things that will ultimately drive this cashless transition is that rate of technology adoption and that’s interesting because it takes generation out of the equation as well”

The presentation at the Women in Payments Symposium concluded on the importance of a payments proposition more broadly and its significance in the context of broader banking relationships.

“We are seeing that those consumers who hold both their primary relationships from a card perspective with their main bank are three times more likely to be an advocate of that institution and perhaps most importantly, they are substantially stickier”.

"Consumers who hold both their primary relationships from a card perspective with their main bank are three times more likely to be an advocate of that institution and perhaps most importantly, they are substantially stickier."

Listen to the full interview with Victoria Bateman to discover the full statistics behind these talking points.

Start listening here.

The Global Digital Banker is an insight-backed podcast series focused on key trends, market insights, thought leadership and best practice within the fast-growing and dynamic world of digital banking.

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