The payment experience is evolving. Over the last few years, the payments ecosystem has witnessed the introduction of multiple innovative digital payment forms and instruments. Triggered by the needs and demands of the younger generations, the desire to run through the checkout line swiftly and efficiently is dire. Tokenisation, sensors, camera, machine learning, mobile wallets, and data analytics have helped to create more frictionless transactional experiences. Invisible Payments are already happening through recurring billing processes, queue-less checkouts, and cashier-less checkouts.
Some of the overarching objectives of these have been to boost customers’ convenience and reduce the time spent in completing transactions, among others. Invisible payments aim to address the timeliness and convenience of cash transactions, which do not require a customer to enter their credentials or provide authentication. By 2022 invisible payments are expected to reach $78 Bn in annual transactions.
Some of the key benefits of invisible payments
Reduces Waiting Time And Cost Optimisation
Quick checkout solutions are provided across various retailers, for example, the billing takes a fraction of second without customers having to lose time waiting in a queue. The time and personnel previously involved in processing payments can be better spent on enhancing customer experiences with value-added activities.
Provides Ease Of Use And Applicability Both Offline And Online
By eliminating manual intervention, for example, of a cashier manually typing the payment amount into a handheld POS, human error by both the payer and the merchant is also eliminated. Thereby promoting the use of digital payments across the globe.
Retailers, ecommerce companies and merchants are working towards making the payments experience seamless and swift. To capitalise on this trend of “immediate buying” there has been an explosion of innovations in the payments field with cards being replaced by mobile phones and mobile wallets taking over our digital payments’ arena. According to a report by KPMG India has more than 45 mobile wallet providers and around 50 UPI-based wallet providers.
It is important to note that invisible payments are not a projection for the future, they are already a reality. When you are using Uber, and you arrive at your destination – the payment is handled in the cloud. That’s it. You get a receipt via email and have not given a thought about cash or cards even once. While digital payment has already spiked high in the ongoing pandemic, a study highlighted that the usage of digital payments among Indian consumers in the current scenario was the highest at 75%, while Invisible payment is going to increase in the upcoming months while we adapt the ‘new normal’.
Talking about the future of payments, the industry will be largely influenced by Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Blockchain, Biometrics. For now, invisible payments are enabling transactions to take place in the background as payment providers and merchants prioritise experience and find more ways to reduce barriers to purchase. Also, as the world is settling with the ‘new normal, contactless payment is going to be more and more popular across. Big finance companies like Mastercard is also enabling contact-free ATM cash withdrawals amid Covid-19 pandemic.
Amongst all the crisis, invisible payments ensure that consumers do not have to carry any cash or card which along with compromising with one’s health also risks the safety of the transaction which is much higher in case of any card-based payment. The virtual cloud-based wallet makes the payment part invisible along with making the end-user experience extremely smooth and quick.
The payments industry will continue to be disrupted by consumer demand for ease and convenience. Technological advancements will provide the tools the industry needs to respond to these demands. It will allow for the creation of innovative solutions that meet and exceed consumer expectations, ultimately leading the industry to the next generation of payment innovation.