Daylight savings time has sprung ahead, it’s a tad warmer each day, and COVID-19 is receding in most places. We’re heading out to shop and dine again — and when we do, we’re going mobile.
Old habits may die hard, but new ones have a way of becoming routine behaviors in short order — when conditions are right. Mobile shopping and payments provide the perfect example, as we find in the latest research on how we’re shopping and paying as the first quarter closes. For the latest in the series, “Digital Economy Payments March 2022 U.S. Edition: Going Digital To Pay For Travel And Restaurant Dining,” we surveyed 3,250 consumers about their attitudes towards these activities in 2022, to find mobile not surprisingly ascendant.
After two years of work from home for millions and a general sense of being homebound even for those not working remotely, perhaps it’s to be expected that when we shop online or go out to eat we’re picking up our phones, ignoring desktops and laptops.
“Usage of mobile devices to purchase travel services has risen steadily during the past few months,” the study noted. “Travel service purchases via mobile device climbed to 48% in January 2022 from 44% in December 2021 and 43% in November 2021. Laptop and desktop computers usage, on the other hand, reached an all-time low in every survey area in February.”
Less that one-third (28%) of consumers reported using their desktops and laptops to shop and pay for travel, for example, down from 34% in November 2021.
It’s the connected economy asserting its anywhere/anytime commerce model via the convenient smartphone, and the trends point to more growth for mobile experiences.
New P2P Favorites
Our renewed love of smartphone-enabled digital experiences is found across activities and channels as mobile facilitates more of what we do, such as transfer money.
The new study states that “32% of consumers were making P2P payments in February. Bridge millennials were the likeliest to do so at 45%, and millennials followed closely behind at 43%. Our data also shows that the share of consumers using Venmo to make their most recent P2P payments surpassed the share of consumers using PayPal.”
Data shows that 26% of consumers opted for Venmo in the last P2P transaction — a healthy rise from the 19% who did so in January — beating out corporate parent PayPal, which dropped from 25% to 21% usage from January to February.
“Consumers from all generations except baby boomers and seniors were more likely to use Venmo rather than PayPal for their most recent P2P payments, with Generation X being the likeliest at 30%,” the study states.
Cards Rule While Declines Drop
A continued trend in mobile growth favors certain payments methods.
According to the March Digital Economy Payments report, “The move to mobile devices for online travel has been accompanied by growth in the use of digital payments. Credit cards and debit cards remain the most popular payment methods with which to purchase travel services, at 46% and 34%, respectively.”
Just 8% of consumers used PayPal versus 4% for other digital wallets, as cash use fell to 2%.
With credit and debit cards the most used payment methods, declines are a concern. However, the data shows that merchants and payment processors are seeing more daylight.
We found that 22% of consumers experiencing payment declines “attributed their most recent declines to insufficient funds, suspicious activity or entering incorrect payment information. Entering incorrect payment information was a top reason for card declines across both physical and digital channels at 41%. At least 12% of consumers attributed their most recent declines to higher transaction amounts, stolen card data or suspended or insufficient credit.”