Payment experiences have drastically changed over the last couple of decades. Enhanced technology, customer need for experience, and safety regulations and measures all help transform how we’re paying for goods and services.
In fact, over time, traditional payment processes have developed into something bigger than what it is initially. They’ve become vital to providing customers with a unique and unforgettable shopping experience.
Why Are Payment Methods Changing?
There are several reasons why payment methods are gradually changing. It is due to several factors:
- The recent advances and changes in digital technology
- Competitive forces
- Consumer demand
- With the rise of FinTechs, sellers and social media giants have created their own payment offerings.
Moreover, a research firm also stated that approximately two-thirds of banks think they must significantly upgrade their payment infrastructure as back office functions become a crucial part of their digital strategy.
So now that you know the basics, here is a list of new payment technologies that change the way we pay online:
1. Mobile Payments
One of the latest trends in the trend of digital payment methods is mobile payments. The great thing about this payment option is that they’re entirely cashless. When you go to a store and pay with your phone, then there’s no need to bring your credit card and pull out your wallet.
Mobile payments, aka mobile money, are making payments via a mobile device. This portable device can be a tablet, phone, laptop, wearable device, smart TV, connected watch, etc. Customers must download a smartphone mobile app and put in their card details.
Mobile payments often refer to transactions made via mobile and include mobile money transfers or mobile wallets. With this technology, customers can purchase from you digitally without using credit cards, cash, or checks. It also helps you boost your conversions in the long run.
2. Biometric Payments
This type of payment technology has evolved over the last couple of years and is seen in various forms. A great example is phone based. Most people utilize a facial scanner or their fingertips on their smartphones. It will authenticate the transfer of payment info to a terminal when they checkout.
Other non-phone-based biometric options may involve using additional hardware on the merchant’s side. This is to get biometric information when they authenticate the payment.
Although the former is more widely accepted, the latter will need the backing of standards and regulations to be a more viable option for specific locations.
Biometric payments make customers feel confident about paying online and enjoy a seamless user experience.
3. Contactless Payments
This type of payment method is one of the fastest and safest payment methods there is. This is true significantly when contactless transaction limits increase and more and more people are making payments via their smartphones.
Moreover, contactless payments evolved during the pandemic due to social distancing measures. But as customer behavior changes, many people also realize the ease of mobile payments.
Retailers will be moving the point of sale (POS) from a permanent physical location to a more mobile experience. Mobile self-checkout also eliminates the need to stand in line, allowing shoppers to keep a safe distance from others.
As the demand for software-based POS technology grows, it’s only a matter of time before it won’t be reserved for big retailers. Small businesses will also be offering this new payment option to their customers.
4. Adoption of Blockchain
Bitcoin doesn’t require you to pay intermediaries or extra fees for the money to move from consumer to merchant. Apps such as Coinbox allow you to integrate POS functionality to simplify the payment process for businesses and customers.
Moreover, payments such as PayPal have also integrated crypto trading and payments. Apart from that, big companies like Expedia and Microsoft have also accepted crypto payments.
The crypto market is volatile and constantly fluctuating. Thus, this may not be the ideal payment option if you’re a small to mid-sized business. In the future, though, as the market stabilizes, it could very well be.
Still, there are a lot of benefits of cryptocurrency payments. Cryptocurrencies can now be converted into real money via professional currency brokers.
As users start gradually exploring the potential these digital assets provide, more and more people and countries will likely adopt this as their preferred payment method.
5. Digital Wallets
Digital wallets, aka mobile wallets, are financial apps that usually run on mobile devices.
With digital wallets, all you need to do to initiate transactions is a smartwatch/smartphone and an excellent internet connection.
This will store securely the payment card information so that it’s easier to pay for in-store items without carrying your card with you.
Here are some excellent examples of mobile wallets and payment apps:
- Apple Pay
- Google Pay
- Samsung Pay
A lot of Peer-to-peer (P2P) Applications, such as Apple Pay, PayPal, Venmo, etc., are already becoming popular as a simple and easy way to transfer money.
These applications are also incorporated with third parties in food delivery or ride-sharing apps, making it easy for customers to pay online.
These integrations allowed customers to pay more quickly and businesses to take advantage of these payment methods to improve customer service.
6. Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC)
A central bank digital currency is virtual money backed and issued by the central bank. This is the fiat currency of the country.
So, instead of printing the money, the central bank will administer accounts and coins which are backed by full faith and government credit.
Because of the rise of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins, central banks worldwide have to come to terms with the fact that they need to participate in digital currencies, or they might need to catch up.
7. QR Code Payments
QR codes have been utilized for a long time, from couponing, ticketing, and even restaurant ads that use them to access online menus. But payment acceptance is newer.
With numerous options, such as static codes to dynamically generated ones, this payment method has gradually evolved and is especially handy in offering a great customer experience.
Although QR code payments continue to grow in North America, it’s becoming more and more popular in Asia and other parts of the world.
Depending on your business size and goals, it can be convenient for many merchants as it’s an alternative way to accept customer payments.
To make payments that are QR-based, all users need to do is open the app of their bank or any digital wallet. Then, scan the merchant’s QR code.
They then must choose a digital payment method like credit cards, net banking—or United payment interface to proceed with the transaction.
8. Leveraging Artificial Intelligence
As technology becomes more and more advanced and accessible, payment technology also shifts, taking advantage of these brand-new capabilities. One of the most significant examples is using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to make payments easily and quickly.
AI can help you create customer profiles and decipher the behavior of users so that they’ll know what their approach will be for a particular transaction.
Often, getting this data saves you time during transactions since it allows you to get information automatically; this includes addresses and other payment details. It also reduces the risk of committing errors along the way.
Apart from that, taking and analyzing large quantities of data with AI allows you to provide the proper assistance to your clients at the right time.
It prevents you from having dissatisfied customers. In more ways than one, AI has changed how we make payments and will continue to play a crucial role in its evolution.
9. EMV Chip Cards
After this was proven effective in preventing counterfeit card fraud in developed nations like Canada, Australia, and France, EMV chip cards were eventually introduced to the US in 2015.
In contrast with magstripe cards, the chips in these EMV cards allow you to come up with unique transaction codes every single time the card is used.
These cards also help you develop communication that is two-way between the payment acceptance device. This is to authenticate the transaction.
According to data by Visa, chip technology has helped curb counterfeit fraud in the United States by up to 76 percent since it launched.
How we’re paying today is becoming increasingly invisible as tech providers constantly search for ways to make a frictionless payment experience as possible. As a result, payments not only become a lot faster but also more fun and secure.
Thus, there’s absolutely no denying that this shift is here to stay. However, although technology has benefits, we still need to consider the implications of using digital systems on a much broader scale in financial service industries.
That’s because any assumptions in security, scalability, and performance have to be considered when you use new tech solutions.
It’s also exciting to think about all the possibilities regarding innovative forms of secure digital financial systems and how they can change the current trends and ideas on payments in the long run.
It’s also ideal to stay updated with the latest payment technologies to keep up with customers’ demands and stay ahead of the competition.
About the Author!
Jake Rheude is the Vice President of Marketing for Red Stag Fulfillment, an eCommerce fulfillment warehouse that was born out of eCommerce. He has years of experience in eCommerce and business development. In his free time, Jake enjoys reading about business and sharing his expertise on how to start an ecommerce businesses.