As consumers turn to buy now, pay later (BNPL) to be able to afford purchases that would otherwise be outside their budgets, subscription merchants are catching on, increasingly offering the option to pay in installments.
The report “The Subscription Commerce Readiness Report: The Loyalty Factor,” a collaboration between PYMNTS Intelligence and sticky.io, drew from a survey of 200 subscription commerce providers across nine industries to obtain data on where subscription merchants stand in terms of feature implementation, sign-up and conversion.
The results revealed that the availability of BNPL options among subscription merchants more than doubled between March 2022 and April 2023, rising from 5% of merchants offering the payment option to 11%.
Additionally, the study’s survey of more than 2,000 U.S. consumers found that 17% cited the availability of BNPL options as being among the most important features when signing up for a subscription.
BNPL adoption is on the rise. Affirm noted in its first-quarter fiscal 2024 earnings results Wednesday (Nov. 8) that active customers surged 15% to 16.9 million, while transactions per average consumers gained 25% to 4.1 million.
“Demand for the product remains strong,” CEO Max Levchin said on a call with analysts. “We are still declining quite a number of applicants because we are trying to remain as thoughtful and productive in our credit outcomes.”
Similarly, Klarna shared in an announcement Monday (Nov. 6) that it saw a 32% increase in its customer base, with the platform now reaching 37 million consumers in the U.S., and a 38% rise in retail partners, reaching 26,000.
“Klarna’s strength in the U.S. is fueled by growing demand for our fair and flexible payments products, with over 99% of our U.S. consumers finding it helpful for avoiding higher risk, interest-bearing credit options,” Klarna CEO Sebastian Siemiatkowski said in a statement.