When asked if they think the COVID-19 pandemic changed how businesses handle and accept money, the overwhelming majority of Australians, Canadians and Americans had noticed a difference.
Fifty per cent of Australians said it had changed significantly across the board, while 41% believed it had only changed for some businesses. Just 9% said they hadn’t noticed any difference at all. In Canada 38% said it had changed significantly, followed by 46% who said it had changed for some businesses, and 15% said they hadn’t noticed any difference. In the USA, 17% hadn’t noticed any difference, compared to 41% who felt it had changed for some places and 42% said it had changed a lot across the board.
But did it change the way we, as customers, pay for goods and services?
For a large portion of us it did, but not in the same way…
The most common response from respondents was “my purchasing habits were not affected.” This was the case for 40% of Americans, 34% of Canadians and 31% of Australians. However, overall most people did make some kind of change (60% of Americans, 66% of Canadians and 69% of Australians). For those that did make a change, the most common was to still primarily use a bank card, but to switch from swiping or inserting it to tap and wave payments.
The next most popular choice was to switch from mostly cash payments to mostly card payments.
N.B. due to low responses the results for those who said, “I made the switch from card to cash,” “I use cryptocurrency more frequently,” “I use Buy Now, Pay Later more frequently,” and “I use By Now, Pay Later less frequently” were combined under “Other” in the bar chart.
Compare the Market’s General Manager of General Insurance, Adrian Taylor, notes that it is important that businesses adapt to new payment technology, and that they consider how this could impact their business insurance needs.
“Business insurance can cover money kept in the building or while it is in transit to the bank in case of an incident like a fire or theft, but as technology changes and digital methods become more popular, it’s important to consider if you need cover for gadgets and tech like EFTPOS machines or Square card readers and other point of sale systems,” explains Taylor.
“If you have an online store and take orders from the web or through apps and social media, it’s well worth considering cyber liability insurance. If your system gets hacked and criminals get access to customer information, you could be liable for damages.”
“Business and technology is an evolving landscape,” Taylor continues. “If you own a business it pays to make sure you regularly review your insurance needs as tech changes the way we do business.”
Compare the Market commissioned PureProfile to survey 1,008 Australian, 1,008 American and 1,006 Canadian adults in May 2023.