Most U.S. consumers would prefer digital payment options, such as website and mobile app channels, to pay one-time bills. The 2020 ACI Speedpay Pulse study from ACI Worldwide finds nearly 70 percent (67.4) of respondents said they prefer digital payment options. The study surveyed more than 3,000 adult consumers in the U.S.
The results revealed consumers are paying an average of nearly 10 bills per month and using more digital methods and channels for bill payment. Over the past year, 1 in 4 consumers has increased their usage of billers’ websites to pay bills, according to the survey. Mobile wallet usage has also increased, with 7 percent of consumers having used a mobile wallet in the last 12 months to pay a monthly bill, as compared to only 3.5 percent last year.
The research also found fewer consumers are interested in traditional payment and statement methods, with around a fifth of consumers noting they decreased their payments through the mail or in person at the biller’s location. And, when it comes to billing statements, more consumers prefer digital billing statements (48.2 percent) to paper billing statements (25 percent), or a combination of digital and paper statements (26.8 percent).
"Organizations must increase digital and mobile payment offerings and should also implement ongoing educational initiatives to help their customers better understand their options"
Debit card and checking account deduction are consumers’ most preferred methods for one-time bill payments, and credit card preference is on the rise. These preferences vary, however, depending on consumer age. Older consumers (ages 52-80) are significantly more likely to prefer checking account deduction (ACH) or credit cards to pay their recurring bills, whereas younger consumers (ages 18-34) are significantly more likely to prefer debit card payments.
"Digital transformation has been on the rise across so many industries, and the pandemic is only pushing consumer demand further," said Sanjay Gupta, executive vice president, ACI Worldwide. "Consumer preference is clearly digital, whether it’s related to payment methods, channels or billing statements, and billers need to address these demands or risk losing customer loyalty. Organizations must increase digital and mobile payment offerings and should also implement ongoing educational initiatives to help their customers better understand their options."