The days of cold, hard cash ruling wallets are swiftly coming to an end. In fact, as of 2017, 50 percent of people don’t even use cash in daily transactions, according to Forbes.
While it’s not likely that paper and metal tender will be gone for good anytime soon, there are many new, convenient digital payment options available, and plenty more emerging.
As technology continues to encourage a paperless world, it’s not surprising that currency would follow.
Not only are many of today’s consumers thrilled with new cashless money storing, money saving, and spending options, but plenty of forward-looking businesses are following suit, adding a myriad of new payment options for both eCommerce and brick-and-mortar shoppers.
Here are a few primary reasons why cashless economies will soon dominate.
This is by far the most obvious reason for a move towards a cashless economy is that carrying a debit card or phone is just more convenient than lugging around a wad of cash.
For businesses, this is especially relevant. Instead of dealing with a key and safe or bank deposits, money can be transferred securely with the push of a button.
In a cashless economy, the customer pays the merchant, and then the merchant transfers the money to the bank. It’s just easier for everyone.
2. Global Acceptance
These days, people are shopping everywhere from their local corner store to eCommerce boutiques based halfway around the world. In a cashless economy, you can do business virtually anywhere, without any hassle or expensive exchange fees.
This global concept is especially beneficial to businesses that run eCommerce stores. While it’s easy to assume that accepting international payments would be expensive and difficult, the reality is that companies such as Allied Wallet process money in hundreds of countries, creating seamless transactions for both customers and merchants.
That’s what’s so exciting about the future. A cashless economy isn’t just a local concept. It can connect people all over the world, allowing sellers and consumers to do business in ways that were impossible in the past.
A cashless economy opens up the possibilities of brand new markets and demographics for today’s businesses that are willing and able to branch out.
3. Speed and Accuracy
In a cashless economy, there’s no waiting while consumers count out their money. They simply swipe a card or tap their phone, and the exact amount of money is withdrawn.
That means shorter lines and saved time for everyone involved. Additionally, you never have to worry about errors when making a transaction. The amount owed is clearly shown and withdrawn instantly.
Everyone has misplaced cash at some point in their lifetime. This is physical currency’s biggest flaw. When it’s gone, it’s gone for good.
Digital money is securely protected, and even if you lose your debit or credit card or phone, you can easily get another one or freeze your accounts in the meantime. Digital currency is securely encrypted, making it a much safer storage option than cash.
5. Monetary Savings
Going cashless is a fantastic way for consumers to save quite a bit of money. In 2016, ATM fees hit a record high of $4.57, on average, according to CNN.
While not all ATM fees are that expensive, it’s clear that today’s consumers are losing money and patience every year, simply because they have to pay a fee to access their own accounts.
Consumers will also benefit from a cashless economy because it will be much easier for them to track their spending.
At some point or another, most people have taken cash out of an ATM, only to find that it’s all been spent by the next morning.
People who go cashless can clearly see exactly what they’ve spent and what they have left, rather than digging through piles of paper to figure out their budget.
6. Recourse Options
If someone spends cash on an unsatisfactory product or service, they’re often out of luck. If they’re fortunate enough to get a refund, it tends to be a hassle that involves traveling or snail mail.
On the other hand, in a cashless economy, a transaction can be disputed from the convenience of one’s home. Money can be refunded directly to a bank account or credit card after the issue has been resolved.
There’s also a clear record that shows exactly where the money went and what is was spent on. There is no grey area – everything is clearly laid out in black and white. Cashless spending is much more transparent and trackable, which is advantageous for both businesses and customers alike.
7. Impulse Purchases
People are less likely to buy something inexpensive if they only have a large bill on-hand, as they would rather not break it.
In a cashless economy, it doesn’t matter what an item costs, as the money is coming from a digital source. This is ideal for businesses, as it encourages consumers to shop more, and it’s beneficial for consumers, as it makes shopping for quick purchases convenient and sensible.
8. Data Tracking
Digital transactions are fantastic for businesses, as they allow savvy marketers to track trends. For example, an eCommerce store can gather analytical data that shows exactly when people buy their products most and where they live.
With that information, it becomes easy to create a targeted advertising campaign based on concrete data, rather than hoping and guessing.
Take Advantage of the Transitionary Period
We’re clearly not cashless yet, but we’re making great strides in getting there.
As of 2017, cash is still used frequently, in conjunction with debit cards, credit cards, and mobile payment options. Whether you’re a business owner or a consumer, the time to start embracing the digital currency options available is now.
When they become the new standard, you’ll be leading the pack.