Alternative payments methods are predicted to surpass credit cards’ market share by 2017, growing up to 59%. For European providers, accommodating alternative payments will no longer act as a strategic differentiator between carriers, but rather as a key element in providing the payment mix that influences consumer behavior in their online journey to conversion.
Despite predictions that APMs will achieve dominance over card payments in upcoming years, it’s worth noting that they are not taking the market from cards. In fact, APMs are more likely to inspire trust especially in those markets where card penetration is low, but where Visa or MasterCard never held significant market shares to begin with.
Due to alternative payment methods, merchants can receive sales that had otherwise been lost. Banks offering Visa for instance have already defined their risk appetite therefore many transactions are declined by issuer/acquirer systems. In the past, they would have remained lost revenue, however APMs offer the possibility of servicing customers through other products that are not as restrictive as traditional Visa/MasterCard schemes.
Let's plunge a bit deeper into the issue. Behaviors across the world show different attitudes towards the most popular payment methods. Main trends go as far as fully oppose each other. However, the striking contrast is not a matter of personal taste, but rather a geopolitics issue. Between the already “fragmented West” and the more exotic East, there lies a mix of custom, tradition and cultural preferences.