Visa study: Asia’s cashless near-future and appetite for crypto | WARC | The Feed
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Visa study: Asia’s cashless near-future and appetite for crypto
The vast majority of southeast Asian consumers (93%) use cashless payment systems, with the average number of days consumers have been able to be cashless across the region growing 14% since 2021 – but amid that growing digital interest, cryptocurrencies emerge in a subtle new place in the popular consciousness.
Why it matters
There is a huge amount to learn from Visa’s Consumer Payments Attitude 2022, even if the payments giant has an obvious interest in more and more of the global population using digital payment services of the kind it provides: it speaks to the successful penetration of digital payments primarily through mobile wallets, online card payments (reflecting the importance of e-commerce), and contactless cards.
Crypto is a standout – another area in which Visa is innovating – with 64% of SEA respondents indicating an interest in making crypto payments, and the same proportion noting their interest in crypto rewards.
This is interesting as it’s more about what a brand can add on to a customer relationship than just an operational way of taking money. That 53% perceive crypto as a convenient way to pay suggests that few respondents have used much crypto, which tends to be slow and unpredictable due to the heavy energy and network loads needed to process transactions.
A moment of pause: the crypto context
Amid a broader crypto crash, with some reports on the phenomenon chronicling crypto-crash rehab centres and a “Bear Market Screaming Therapy Group”, it’s important to note the sheer volatility inherent in unsecured markets, and the huge risks to non-expert users.
Earlier this summer, the markets watched aghast as the supposedly safer stablecoins like TerraUSD, Luna, or Tether all lost value, having used unsecured company debt as a reserve. Though they are attempting to reduce their exposure, it’s likely that some regulation, or at least standards, will be needed before crypto hits the mainstream – not least to curb the biggest currencies’ catastrophic environmental impact.
Cashless usage across the region
- SEA total: 93%
- Singapore: 97%
- Malaysia: 96%
- Indonesia: 95%
- Vietnam: 95%
- Thailand: 94%
- Philippines: 92%
- Cambodia: 68%
Broadly, you can put this down to the acceleration of e-commerce during the pandemic, with 60% of the region’s shoppers now buying from online marketplaces.
About the research
Visa’s study survey was commissioned by Visa and conducted with CLEAR from August to September 2021, among 6,520 consumers aged 18 – 65 years of age in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Cambodia.
Sourced from Visa, The Guardian, WARC, New York Times. Image: Visa
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