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Fintech Q4 2021

Post pandemic trends: rethink payment acceptance strategies

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Natalia Ivanis

Chief Marketing Officer & Co-Founder, Merchant Payments Ecosystem merchantpaymentsecosystem.com

Merchants and payments companies must anticipate what’s next. What are current trends in merchant payments and what can we expect in 12 months?


In-store retail sales fell dramatically in 2020 and 2021 when the pandemic forced merchants to close physical stores. On the other hand, the global ecommerce market grew 19% to $4.6 trillion and is expected to grow nearly 60% by 2024, driven by mobile commerce.

As a response to rapidly changing commerce and habits of consumers, merchants introduced flexible delivery models, such as click and collect and embraced digital transformation as a matter of survival. Digital engagement and flexible delivery models moved from nice-to-haves to must-haves in their 2022 priorities.

Now more than ever, success means identifying opportunities across markets and creating products that respond to those opportunities.

Re-evaluating payment processes 

Increased consumers’ demand for digital payment acceptance forced merchants to re-evaluate the types of payments they accept. New digital payment methods, such as contactless, mobile wallets and BNPL (buy now, pay later) now proliferate. 

BNPL is now the fastest-growing payment method; by 2024, an estimated $306.8 billion of e-commerce purchases will be made via BNPL, increasing from $97.2 billion in 2020.

The push towards digitisation and contactless payments will also benefit real-time payments and crypto initiatives, which will find more support and attraction.

Merchants needs on the way to digital transformation

As e-commerce and mobile commerce continues to gain ground in the years to come, merchants need more from their payment providers than simply processing payments. They are looking for new ways to engage with digitally enabled customers and create a seamless customer experience, paying full attention to the payment processes and ensuring they are tailored to their customers’ preferences.

Challenges for acquirers 

Payment’s acquirers serving in-store merchants face major challenges. They have to cope with the growing demands of regulators, face a fast-growing generation of fintech competitors and integrate the relevant combination of technologies in their offering. The key will be to identify and select various technologies that will offer merchants accessibility, convenience and speed of payments over both face-to-face and online channels, while leveraging the most-used payment rails.

The post-pandemic commerce and merchant payments ecosystem represents a considerable opportunity and challenge for both merchants and payment providers, some of which are so significant they need a completely fresh approach. Now more than ever, success means identifying opportunities across markets and creating products that respond to those opportunities. The merchant payments business is changing so fast that doing everything yourself is no longer an option and designing effective partnership is going to be the winning strategy in the years ahead.

Learn more about the Merchant Payments Ecosystem 2022 trends and challenges by joining the MPE 2022, the leading European event connecting 1000+ BIG merchants and payment companies.

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