New Data: Instant Disbursement Use Spikes 8X Since 2017

Instant disbursement use by consumers continues to grow as more and more consumers realize the convenience of the digital payment method.More than half of United States consumers received disbursements from various corporate and government agencies in the last 12 months. This number is slightly less than at this time last year due to an ongoing drop in government disbursements. Even so, the number of disbursements consumers receive is on the rise, especially instant disbursements.57%: Share of consumers who received at least one disbursement in the past year

When they have the option, consumers use instant digital payments instead of slower, non-instant digital payment methods. Thirty-two percent of consumers now use instant methods as their primary way to receive nongovernment payouts. This share is at an all-time high since we produced the first report in this series in 2017. The lack of availability remains a factor limiting consumers from adopting instant rails as their preferred payment method.

These are some of the findings in “Measuring Consumers’ Growing Interest in Instant Payouts,” a PYMNTS Intelligence and Ingo Payments collaboration. This report is based on a census-balanced survey of 3,898 U.S. consumers conducted between Dec. 28, 2023, and Jan. 22, 2024. It examines consumers’ use of instant pay for payouts received from government and nongovernment entities. This is the seventh year that we have conducted this study, giving insight into consumers’ growing interest in instant disbursements, even as some issuers lag in offering instant options.

Other key findings include the following:

77%: Portion of consumers primarily receiving instant disbursements who are highly satisfiedUse of and satisfaction with instant payments for nongovernment disbursements is up.

After a brief usage plateau, receiving disbursements via instant payments is on the rise again. Overall, 10% of disbursement receivers had no option other than an instant payout. Another 22% chose instant when given the option. Consumers’ use of instant payouts is highest for loan- and borrowing-related disbursements. This usage suggests consumers turn to instant when they need funds as soon as possible.

Consumers are more willing to pay a fee for instant payment and are comfortable with its safety and security.

Consumers’ concerns about paying for and using instant payouts are waning. PYMNTS Intelligence finds that 29% of consumers would be willing to pay a fee to receive payment instantly, up from 26% one year ago. Millennials, Generation Z and those earning more than $100,000 are among the most willing to pay for instant payouts. Consumers who are unlikely to choose instant if offered the option cite data security issues as a top reason. Security concerns are becoming less of an issue, as 17% fewer consumers express this concern compared to the peak in 2021.29%: Share of consumers willing to pay a fee to receive a payment instantly

Many consumers would choose instant disbursements if offered it.

The lack of instant payment options may limit consumers from picking instant rails as their payment method of choice. As of January 2024, 77% of consumers would choose instant payments to receive disbursements if given the option. Interest rose the most for borrowing payouts, insurance payouts and gambling winnings among those who would choose instant payment if available.

Increasing efforts to match the growing demand for instant payments could be key to keeping customers and attracting new ones. Download the report to learn how issuers can meet consumer demand for instant payouts.