The advent of advanced mobile technology and LTE connections might have put consumers years ahead of the curve, but most businesses are seemingly underprepared to handle their consumers' expectations.
A hot-off-the-presses report from ACI Worldwide and market research firm Ovum has revealed that a majority of organizations, including leading banks, retailers and billing organizations, were underprepared to handle consumer demands and lacked the payments innovation necessary to win consumers.
While as much as 73 percent of surveyed companies reportedly thought of "competitive pressure" as their biggest motivator to upgrade their existing technology and invest in payments, 59 percent of that base said that their organization didn't feel confident enough to drive innovation in payments in their company.
Another factor that emerged as a top reason was "security considerations," with over 72 percent pointing toward it as their reason for driving additional investment in payments.
When the survey respondents were asked about plans on investing more money in their payments IT infrastructure in the next 18–24 months, a difference in investment behavior came to light.
Over 37 percent of merchants reportedly didn't expect their company's payments investment to go above 5 percent. Similarly, billing organizations and transaction banks fall right behind, with 37 and 36 percent, respectively, expecting less than a 5 percent increase.
However, retail banks reflected upon a new growing pool of professionals — 39 percent of which see no change in their financial spending plans for improving upon their existing payments infrastructure.
The big shift toward upgrading payments infrastructure is being propelled by a move toward abandoning cash and relying on electronic payments. About 25 percent of surveyed companies reportedly stopped accepting cash last year — thereby, boosting the number of businesses accepting electronic payments to 80 percent.