The speed of technological advancements has accelerated the arrival of digitally-centric lifestyles and business models – even new industries in some cases – which now fall under what PYMNTS now calls the ever-expanding ConnectedEconomy ™.
Measuring the pace of change as consumers and businesses go digital in virtually everything from shopping and payment to choosing the type of financial institution (FI) to deal with, whether it’s ‘a traditional bank or a challenger, PYMNTS’ inaugural report, How Consumers Live in the ConnectedEconomy ™, based on a survey of more than 15,000 US consumers, is the first in a new series exploring the unknown country connected experiences and technology streaming in the market.
According to the June study, “The rise of a ConnectedEconomy ™ ecosystem – powered by 5G, IoT, machine learning, AI and countless connected devices – has the potential to make experiences digital consumers more transparent and deeply integrated into their daily lives, ”adding that“ segments of the economy that have historically operated… in silos, such as retail, payment processing and delivery services, are now deeply integrated ”.
Demonstrating how the new connectivity is organized according to all kinds of preferences, PYMNTS researchers have identified eight “pillars” of ConnectedEconomy ™, as well as rapidly emerging consumer personalities that correspond to the connected “Big 8”.
Devices that bring it all together
The depth and breadth of How Consumers Live In The ConnectedEconomy ™ findings are intimidating, and it’s no surprise that devices, data, and trust all play pivotal roles, coming together as they now are under the umbrella. section on horizontal payments covering trade.
“Several data points from our research illustrate how well consumers have embraced digital tools over the past 15 months,” according to the study, with 92% of all consumers placing online orders for products and / or services. “More than 85% paid their bills online and handled their banking transactions online, and 72% booked hotel tickets online,” according to the study.
Additionally, more than 70% of consumers have paid their bills online in recent months, along with account-to-account transfers and payment apps, including PayPal and Venmo.
There is no ConnectedEconomy ™ without digital devices, and the findings regarding device ownership contain some surprises. “Despite the abundance of gadgets on the market, the average number of devices owned appears to be leveling off, falling slightly below five after increasing for several years. Even among the most avid device enthusiasts – a group we previously referred to as the super-connected in our research – the average number has peaked at around seven. ”
Additionally, 92% of consumers have placed an online order for a product and / or service “at least once recently, and more than three-quarters perform” at least some online banking. “
Payments lead the way
The more connected the more they wish to be, based on the results of the study. “Consumers who are very connected at home, for example, are also likely to be very connected in the pillars of banking (91%), travel and entertainment (92%) and health (84%) “, the researchers discovered.
This trend has legs, with 62% of highly connected people having received payments in mobile wallets at least once in the past year – double those paid by check or direct deposit.
“Highly connected consumers also tend to use a wide variety of methods to make payments. The majority of them use four distinct methods: Credit cards are the most common – 80% of them have used the payment method in the last 12 months – but mobile wallets and debit cards are at the end of the line. tied for second at 65%, while PayPal rounds out the list at 62%. percent.”
Larger shares use e-commerce for retail products (66%) and groceries (56%) than for physical stores (50% and 54%, respectively).
ConnectedEconomy ™ weighing Advantages and disadvantages
Other data analyzed for How Consumers Live In The ConnectedEconomy ™ paints a picture of the perceived risks and benefits of adopting a fully connected lifestyle.
“The pros and cons of digital engagement vary across pillars. In the workplace, for example, 54% cite productivity, ease and convenience as advantages, while about a quarter indicate wasted time and communication failures as disadvantages. “
Another 60% appreciate the ease and convenience of digital, especially in the shopping pillar, while around 21% “are concerned about wasting time and money. Safety is a top concern in the home environment, cited by 30 percent. That’s understandable, because device hacking and data breaches could literally strike near you. “
On trust and “super-connectivity”
Data and trust go hand in hand everywhere today, nowhere more than in the connected experience. There cannot be one without the other, and somewhat alarmingly for traditional financial institutions (FIs), Big Tech assumes a mantle of reliability that people once reserved for banks.
“These trends are even stronger among ‘super connected’ consumers – those with six or more connected devices – and bridge millennials,” the study said, adding that “the most trusted connected commerce enablers among consumers super connected are Amazon (53 percent), Visa (46%), PayPal (44%), Apple (41%) and primary banks (35%).