Bill Pay is High Stakes
A recently-released study reveals more and more consumers are dissatisfied with the limitations of their current bill pay technology and many would switch providers if it meant having access to a better bill pay alternative.
The study, released by PYMNTS, reveals 40 percent of consumers are “very” or “extremely” interested in “an improved billing experience” and half of survey respondents “were likely to change their billing providers” in pursuit of an “optimized bill pay experience.”
“A key takeaway from our research is the strong link between convenience and customer satisfaction,” writes PYMNTS, “ … digital-savvy consumers, who tend to be younger and have higher incomes, expect a frictionless payment experience. An improved bill payment offering can help service providers increase customer satisfaction and engagement.”
These findings, based on a PYMNTS survey of nearly 3,000 consumers, corresponds closely with BillGO’s own research.
“Every study we’ve done in the last six years has landed in a similar place,” said BillGO CEO Dan Holt. “Consumers want three things when they pay their bills: choice, consolidation and control. Unfortunately for banks, many legacy bill pay platforms still cannot do this. And, for six years, we’ve been telling banking executives, ‘if you don’t deliver those three things, your customers will take their bill pay business to someone who does."
Consumers Rejecting the Status Quo
Additional PYMNTS findings only reinforce the growing consumer appetite for a more modern and streamlined bill pay experience.
For instance, 41 percent of consumers cite ease and convenience as the most important reason to choose a digital channel, while 23 percent said faster (or instant) payments were the most important factor.
Additionally, PYMNTS found…
- Eighty-five percent of all monthly bills are paid digitally.
- More than one-third of recurring bills are set for automatic payment.
- Thirty-three percent of consumers are dissatisfied with how long it takes to process billing disputes.
- Fifty-one percent consumers would consider paying a fee for a better bill pay service.
Modern Features Matter
Why should banking and fintech executives focus on delivering a modernized bill pay experience to their customers?
“Bill pay is something users do every day or every week, adding bill pay functionality can attract new users, deepen existing customer relationships, and give [banks and fintechs] the ability to broaden its users and generate more revenue,” said Daniel Hawtof, BillGO’s SVP of Bill Pay Product.
Like every other aspect of digital commerce, consumers are seeking ways to simplify their lives and remove as much friction as possible. But they also are looking for tools that provide greater visibility so they can better manage their affairs.
In other words, a bill pay platform that allows them to simply “set it and forget it” probably won’t meet customer needs.
In light of that concern (and the devastating impact of late fees), it’s essential modern bill pay technology provide users with prompts to help ensure they don’t miss due dates. But that’s just the beginning. BillGO’s research also confirms consumers want features such as online tools that help them fully manage day-to-day cash flows and enable them to schedule regular fixed payments. They also demand choice. Whereas most legacy bill pay platforms offer the binary option to pay bills using a checking or savings accounts, today’s consumers want the ability to pay from credit cards, gift cards, virtual cards and more.
Offering customers a holistic, modern bill pay platform serves as one more building block in a meaningful, long-term customer engagement and satisfaction leading to lasting relationships. Not only does it enable customers an opportunity to manage their bills, but it can also provide real-time access to account information your customers can use to stay on top of their finances.
Data supports this. As we recently examined in our latest whitepaper, Banking on Financial Well-Being, increasingly, consumers are turning to their FIs for help on how to better manage their finances. One whitepaper finding worth noting: 80 percent of consumers expect their primary financial institution to help them improve their financial health, but only 14 percent of them “strongly agree” their FIs are delivering.
BillGO is Leading the Way on Better Bill Pay
If you’re looking for more in-depth information on the importance of providing world-class bill pay technology to your customers, check out BillGO’s latest eBook, Winning the Battle for Bill Pay. In it you’ll find additional data from PYMNTS, as well as research from Aite Group, Mercator and others detailing what consumers want and need in bill pay technology.