Despite New Payment Options, Prepaid Remains Popular (July 28, 2015)
While consumers still are using traditional methods of payment, they’re beginning to adopt digital and mobile options at significant rates, according to Blackhawk Network research released today. The report also indicates that, although prepaid cards are not new, consumers in large numbers continue to find them convenient for purchases.
In an April survey of more than 1,000 American adults, Blackhawk found that 68 percent of alternative payment users report they are using alternative payment methods more than last year, while the use of cash and check to make payments is declining. However, the tried-and-true gift card’s popularity is still significant. Eighty-seven percent of consumers surveyed think merchant-specific gift cards are convenient to use, higher than the 82 percent who said debit cards are convenient. Consumers reported using a variety of payment types in the past 12 months with 48 percent of consumers using retail gift cards, 45 percent using a Visa– or MasterCard-branded gift card and 33 percent using a prepaid debit card. And, 30 percent of consumers are using prepaid debit cards more than last year.
“Consumers still have a strong preference for traditional payment methods like debit cards and prepaid cards,” said Teri Llach, Blackhawk chief marketing officer. “Those payments tools are not going away anytime soon, even as interest in and usage of new payment methods grows. Payments is not either/or when it comes to legacy payments versus emerging products; it’s really about convenience and providing a mix of options.”
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