Over half of consumers now aware of contactless payments

May 30, 2014

Universal_Contactless_Card_Symbol.svgAwareness of contactless payments in the UK has made big strides over the last two years, according to the Contactless Payment Index results from eDigitalResearch. Over half (58%) of consumers now report to seeing a contactless payment point or symbol, an increase from just 15% in 2012.

eDigitalResearch have been tracking the growing UK mobile payment market since early 2012 and have witnessed a steady incline in the number of consumers taking advantage of the benefits that NFC technology and contactless mobile payments has to offer. Now in its third year, eDigitalResearch have expanded the study to cover contactless card payments.

The survey of 2,000 consumers found that over half (55%) of respondents now own some sort of contactless payment card, with many owning more than one. Of those that have access to the technology, 38% have so far used their cards to make a contactless payment – mainly at supermarkets and convenience stores where speed is of the essence.

In comparison, almost 1 in 10 (9%) of the UK population now have access to an NFC enabled smartphone device – 49% who have used the technology to make a contactless mobile payment, the majority of whom are repeat users.

Derek Eccleston, Commercial Director at eDigitalResearch, comments, “Our latest contactless payment research has found, not only a growing a use of contactless payments, but a growing appetite to use the technology as well. Of those that are yet to make a payment using a contactless card, 57% expect to do so within the next year. And the same can be said for mobile. With that in mind, it’s not awareness anymore that banks and technology providers need to be working on, but opening up the technology so that more can take advantage of the benefits that contactless payments have to offer”.

However, the study also found that concerns surrounding security, fraud and technical issues still remain some of the key barriers to widespread adoption. When asked what one improvement consumers would like to see with both contactless card and mobile payments, almost one third of those asked said they would like better or tighter security surrounding the technology. Similarly, of those consumers who think they will never use contactless payments, over half (53%) said that concerns overs security and fraud are holding them back, whilst an even bigger percentage (71%) are simply happy with the way they pay now.

Derek continues, “The main difficulties now facing banks and technology providers in the path to widespread adoption, are to challenge people’s perception of the technology, as well as altering consumer behaviour. Almost three quarters (71%) of the 43% who said that they’re not interested in using contactless cards felt that the technology is just not necessary”.

For a copy of the full Contactless Mobile Payment Index results, please complete the following short registration survey.