Global Visa Study Finds 67% of Small Businesses and 78% of Consumers Have Adopted New Behaviors to Adjust to COVID-19
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Visa Back to Business study finds 67% of small businesses have tried something new to stay on track amidst COVID-19 (Graphic: Business Wire)
“Consumers are putting COVID-19 safety measures at the top of their shopping lists and rewarding businesses that do the same,” said Suzan Kereere, global head of merchant sales and acquiring,
Additional findings from the Visa Back to Business study conducted in the
Consumers Now Expect Digital-First Commerce
- Safety first means touchless: In each market surveyed, contactless payments have become a driving differentiator: nearly two-thirds (63%) of consumers would switch to a new business that installed contactless payment options. For close to half of global consumers (46%), using contactless payment methods is among the most important safety measures for stores to follow. Nearly half (48%) would not shop at a store that only offers payment methods that require contact with a cashier or a shared device.
- SMB optimism vs. consumer realities: Despite the unpredictable nature of the pandemic, 75% of SMBs are optimistic about the future. Additionally, 71% of global SMB owners say they have received support from their local communities, with the most coming in the form of business referrals (33%) and favorable reviews (31%). An area for improvement: where consumers shop, as just 9% of consumers say they shop exclusively at locally owned businesses, whereas 15% shop exclusively at larger retailers, with a large mix of combined approaches falling in between these two extremes.
- New normal means new habits: Nearly four in five (78%) consumers have made changes to the way they pay, including shopping online when possible (49%), using contactless payments (48%) and not using cash as much (46%). A majority (70%) of consumers have used a new shopping or payment method for the first time, including 26% who have used tap to pay for in-store purchases, shopping for groceries or household items online (34%), curbside restaurant pick-up (28%) and buying online then picking up in store (25%).
Small Businesses Take Action, Amidst Real Challenges
- Long-term outlook and top concerns: Globally, SMB owners estimate at least six to 10 more challenging months before their business is fully operational. Their greatest immediate concerns include revenue declines (52%), attracting new customers (46%) and having to reduce wages or salaries (22%).
- Pivoting to a digital-first mindset: More than a quarter of SMBs (28%) have tried targeted advertising on social media or sold products or services online (27%). Another 20% have adopted contactless payments. One-third (33%) of SMBs report they have accepted less, or stopped accepting, cash since COVID-19. Millennial SMB owners (41%) are significantly more likely to have accepted less or stopped accepting cash, compared to Gen X (31%) and Boomers (21%).
- On guard against fraud: More than half (53%) of SMBs are likely to purchase a fraud management solution to help protect their business due to the shift to digital commerce.
Regional Insights: Tackling Challenges and Card Cleanliness
Pivoting with new approaches: In the
United Arab Emirates( UAE), 44% of SMBs – compared to 20% globally – have enabled contactless payments for the first time since the start of COVID-19. Nearly 94% of UAESMBs have pivoted to keep their business on track, compared to 67% globally. SMBs in Brazil(84%) and Hong Kong(87%) also are trying new approaches in large numbers, including selling online (50% in Brazilcompared to 27% globally).
Swipe? Then wipe: Two-thirds (67%) of consumers say they are taking some measure to keep their payment cards clean, with 33% saying they disinfect them. An overwhelming majority of
UAE(89%) and Brazilian (87%) consumers are taking some measures to keep their card clean, whereas Singaporean (50%), German (53%), Canadian (60%) and Hong Kong(65%) consumers fell below the global average.
The Visa Back to Business study is the latest in a series of
Methodology: Visa Back to Business Study
The Visa Back to Business study was conducted by