When you’re paying the same amount in the end, does when you pay really matter? Research says it does for younger audiences, who are increasingly choosing to use ‘buy now, pay later’ methods.
‘Buy now pay later’ (BNPL) is a rapidly popular way to purchase goods or services and is used for about 14% of all online transactions. The method is most commonly used by younger shoppers and is only going to continue growing.
Implementing popular BNPL systems could help you convert website visitors to sales. But there are distinct services which have yielded better results because of this new payment style.
WHAT MAKES BNPL DIFFERENT?
Recent data from BigCommerce revealed that ‘buy now, pay later’ accounts for 14% of all online transactions in the COVID-led eCommerce market.
2020 resulted in sluggish economic growth in Australia. Severe bushfires and natural disaster combined with the outbreak of COVID-19 lowered consumer confidence, discouraging consumers from purchasing discretionary items.
In turn, more people opted to pay via BNPL services to cover their immediate needs when they could not pay upfront. BNPL breaks a payment into manageable pieces, so instead of needing to pay a daunting $100, a customer may feel like their immediate budget will be less impacted by repaying that in segments.
BNPL satisfies the instinctual drive for an immediate reward instead of forcing budgeting and restraint. Repayment plans are nothing new, but what BNPL does differently is offering fast, digital payments with small, to no interest.
INDUSTRIES BNPL WORKS BEST FOR
Younger shoppers are mainly using this fledgling payment method; items that appeal to their demographic are most commonly being purchased. But as the technology becomes more popular, older target audiences will likely begin to take advantage of it, like Paypal where 22% of their user base is aged 55 or older.
The Ascent recently surveyed over 1,800 consumers and found the most popular purchases with BNPL were: electronics (44%), clothing (37%), furniture and appliances (33%) and household essentials (31%).
The Buy Now Pay Later industry is predicted to boom in the next five years, albeit more slowly than between 2015-2020. Research from The Ibis indicated that over the next five years, consumers “may come to expect BNPL payment options to be available when they purchase services or goods at retail stores”.
Data from ASIC revealed that the total amount of credit extended in the buy now pay later industry has almost doubled in 12 months. The number of BNPL transactions more than doubled from 16.8 million in the 2017-18 financial year to 32.0 million in 2018-19.
If you integrate a buy now pay later system into your eCommerce website’s payment options, visitors like these could be much easier to convert into paying customers. Fashion retailer, Princess Polly, reported a 20% increase in sales after implementing BNPL services. In the competitive retail environment, BNPL could be the leg up you need to get ahead.
Buy now pay later is fundamentally a similar marketing tactic to ending prices in .99c instead of rounding up to the nearest whole dollar. The same tender is being used to pay for goods, but the marketing behind it makes people think they are paying less.
HOW DO I GET ONBOARD?
There are six third-party buy now pay later providers approved by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) at present. Afterpay is the most popular, followed by the likes of by zipPay, Openpay and several other options.
Each company has a contact form so businesses can apply to use the service, and most commonly used eCommerce platforms have a relatively simple plug-and-play method to integrate into your website.