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20 Mar 2024 Article

In the Age of Instant – It’s Time for Payments to Step Up

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Immediacy and convenience are at the core of today’s instant economy, with consumers now expecting real-time interactions across all digital touchpoints and in all facets of their lives. However, the promise of a true instant economy remains unfulfilled, in part, because it requires an entire ecosystem of digital payment technologies that have not kept up with changing consumer needs. 

Brite’s latest report, Instant Economy Payment Insights: 2024, explores consumers’ changing needs and payment preferences and shines a light on how digital payments must evolve to cater to them. Our in-depth analysis of six selected key markets across Europe reveals how consumer payment behaviour is changing and shows a growing appetite for new payment methods. A transformation is underway across countries and demographics, reflecting the instant economy’s demands for speed, security, and simplicity. 

The emergence of Pay by Bank – a category of payments based on the direct transfer of funds between bank accounts – can play an important role in this transformation. The growing maturity of open banking, coupled with a new generation of instant account-to-account (A2A) or Pay by Bank solutions, is helping address merchant pain points and cater to consumer appetite for payment methods suited to the instant economy. 

“A transformation is underway across countries and demographics, reflecting the instant economy’s demands for speed, security, and simplicity.” 

Lena Hackelöer
Founder and CEO, Brite Payments

Evolving Preferences 

However, despite a strong regulatory framework underpinning innovation drivers like open banking, Europe remains a diverse and, at times, fragmented region. This is revealed through different payment preferences and the highly variable level of familiarity with Pay by Bank. In the United Kingdom, Spain, and the Netherlands, familiarity is already at over 90 percent, indicating that these countries are primed to adopt the new generation of Pay by Bank payments as merchant acceptance increases.

Contrastingly, other countries, such as France, exhibit a more cautious approach, highlighting the continued dominance of legacy forms of payment, even as the world becomes ever more instant. Nevertheless, there’s potential for Pay by Bank to provide consumers with a more immediate and convenient form of payment. 

The Rise of Pay by Bank

The growth potential is also evident through consumers’ online purchasing habits, with regular Pay by Bank users more likely to buy online than non-users, especially in high-engagement sectors like hotels and travel, tickets and digital subscriptions.

Indeed, the allure of Pay by Bank and its more specific variations, such as the Instant A2A Payments offered by Brite, is particularly striking with younger generations. 36 percent of all 18-29 year-olds are already utilising it weekly, suggesting we are nearing a critical mass of consumers ready to break with traditional payment habits.

At Brite, we are committed to seeing our brand of Instant A2A payments help Pay by Bank achieve its enormous potential. The Instant Economy Payment Insights report acts as a valuable touchpoint for this development.

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