A study sheds light on consumer’s appetite for new bill payment technologies, and forecasts a decrease in traditional pay-by-mail activity in the coming year.
The Money Mindset Index, a survey fielded by Western Union, reveals that consumer preferences for online and mobile bill payments continue to mature, with 39% in the U.S. saying they will pay more bills online in 2013, and 12% intending to pay more bills by mobile phone.
14% of consumers report that they will make an urgent payment via their mobile device in the next six months.
Furthermore, 25% of consumers say that they intend send fewer checks in the mail to pay their bills.
“Consumers are increasingly looking for new ways to manage their bills, which points to the need for continued innovation by service providers across the payments industry,” said David Shapiro, SVP/Payments, Western Union. “Less than one-third of payments occur via traditional channels, and consumers continue to use an expanding mix of payment methods that provide enhanced choice, flexibility, control and convenience around their lifestyles and cash flow.”
A Snapshot of the Bill Payment Landscape
The Money Mindset Index also reveals the mix of channels consumers are using to pay their bills, as they continue to seek choice and flexibility in their payment options:
- 46.5% of bills are paid via a biller, bank or credit union website
- 20.2% of bills are paid via mail
- 19.6% of bills are paid via an automatic deduction or recurring payment
- 8.7% of bills are paid in-person at a walk-in location
- 3% of bills are paid via a landline phone
- 2% of bills are paid via mobile phone
Consumers Bill Payment Strategies Will Continue to Evolve
Consumers’ approach to bill payments will continue to evolve in 2013. According to the Money Mindset Index, consumers will revisit how they make and organize their bill payments, with 26 percent indicating they will set new priorities for which bills get paid first. Additionally, 15% of consumers said they will wait longer to pay their bills.
“Western Union understands that consumers are seeking new bill payment options, and we are providing solutions to market through a multi-product, multi-channel strategy,” said Shapiro. “As an organization, we assist billers in delivering innovative payment alternatives to their customers, including mobile, SMS and mobile web, as well as walk-in, phone and online payment services, so billers can stay ahead of evolving consumer demand.”
The Western Union Payments Money Mindset Index, conducted by Javelin Strategy & Research, has a margin of error of 1.76 percentage points and was conducted in December 2012 with 3,002 respondents. The random sample survey targeted online respondents based on representative proportions of geography, gender, age, income and ethnicity as compared to the overall U.S. population. Consumer bill payment channel mix in the United States is based on Western Union market research, July 2012.