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COVID pandemic pushed consumers into digital payments
Tue, 22nd Nov 2022
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Seventy eight percent of Australians who currently use digital wallets as debit or credit cards said the COVID-19 pandemic pushed them towards using digital means of payment, according to a new study.

GetApp has revealed the findings of its latest study: what users think of digital wallets, how they use them, and their advantages and disadvantages.

After collecting and analysing the results of over 1,000 respondents, GetApp found that over half of the respondents (53%) said they are currently using digital wallets. 

Of the respondents currently using digital wallets, 79% use their digital wallets as debit/credit cards for payment purposes. 43% of respondents said they use them for loyalty cards, 40% for ID cards, and 23% for withdrawing money from ATMs. In addition, 58% of the respondents who use digital wallets as debit/credit cards identified Apple Pay as their preferred digital payment platform.

A combination of nationwide lockdowns alongside people using online platforms for purchases has been a major contributing factor to the increase in digital wallet use. Out of the percentage of those who use digital wallets as debit/credit cards for payment purposes, a combined total of 78% of respondents, with 40% selecting ‘somewhat’ and 38% selecting ‘strongly’, said that the pandemic pushed them away from using cash and towards more digital means of payment.

Some 6% of all respondents said they used digital wallets previously but won’t do so in the future. Of this percentage, the majority of respondents said that they prefer using physical cards (57%), followed by other reasons such as data protection concerns (30%), disliking dependency on their phones (25%), and unwillingness to store sensitive information on their smartphones (23%).

Of current digital wallet users, 78% of respondents find online wallets more convenient than traditional methods. 26% of participants think digital wallets make it easier to demonstrate their identity, and 18% of them feel that digital wallets may help reduce fraud, as the information they store is typically encrypted.

When those who currently use digital wallets were asked about their disadvantages, exactly half of the respondents (50%) stated that they are concerned about digital wallets leading to increased dependency on smartphones. 40% flagged that they may compromise data in the case of a lost device, and 38% said they are unable to access payment methods if their phone battery runs out. 20% of survey respondents said they have never used them before but are interested. However, 22% said they have never used them and are also not interested in using them in the future.

Regarding their hesitancy to use digital wallets, 60% of participants, out of those who haven't used digital wallets and are also not interested in using them further, stated that they are worried about data protection. Alongside this, 59% of respondents don’t want to have sensitive information stored on their smartphones in case it gets stolen. 50% said they find digital wallets unnecessary, 34% don’t want to be even more dependent on technology than they already are, and 11% find digital wallets complex to configure.

"Our survey data from the first part of this article indicated that the majority of the Australian respondents are currently using digital wallets. Online businesses can perhaps take advantage of this digital shift to ensure a smoother shopping experience for customers, build brand loyalty, and boost sales,” says Ojasvini, Content Analyst at GetApp Australia. 

“This shift in customer behaviour and the overall digital trend might create new equivalent opportunities for many online businesses."