Of all of the changes COVID-19 will usher into society, one of the most lasting and most prominent will is likely to be an aversion to touching shared surfaces, from door handles to pin pads. That aversion has only been part of the national zeitgeist for a few months, but has already accelerated the trend toward touchless payments.
About 47% of American consumers are expected to use mobile wallets in 2020. Even two years ago, half of the United States’ stores – approximately 5 million locations – accepted Apple Pay, and 4 million accepted Google Pay.
Before the pandemic, contactless payments’ biggest hurdle to overcome was security concerns, despite being more secure than traditional payment methods; but as public health concerns become society’s primary focus, lesser fears over security are likely to fall by the wayside.
The most common form of contactless payment, via the mobile wallet, has big upsides for businesses even beyond public health and consumer comfort. Digital loyalty cards can be seamlessly linked to the mobile wallet, positively impacting penetration rates. Digital payments will enable pay-at-table features and make on-the-go transactions more convenient. And stored-value mobile cards, like the ones Starbucks popularized, will become more mainstream, providing businesses with small, interest-free loans.
For more information on the benefits of touchless payments, check out this webinar: Is Touchless Payment the New Normal?