Trendlines and Survey Markers: Consumers Prefer Charge Cards, But Still Learning About Them

A pair of mid-summer surveys come our way, showing that Americans really like using the plastic in their wallets, but are still learning all the ins-and-outs of what it means to have both credit, and a credit score.

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According to a study released by credit research firm NextAdvisor, attempting to determine everyone’s favorite “go-to payment option. Whether it’s a debit card, a credit card, cash or a check, it’s the way we prefer to pay for in-person or online purchases.”

What they found was 42% of respondents overall like to pay with a debit card, followed by 38% who prefer credit (though for the 51 and over demographic, credit was preferred to debit), while 17% like the no-nonsense approach of cash, and 3% still list checks as their “go-to” choice.

As an article in the NY Post about the survey sums up, “online, the breakdown was 50 percent credit cards, 30 percent debit cards and 20 percent PayPal or similar bank account-linked services. The respondents who prefer debits cards said they are convenient and allow them ‘to use real money.’ In the case of credit cards, respondents said they want rewards points.”

Chase Bank, meanwhile, released their own summer survey on charge cards and consumer trends, and found that while many people were generally willing to take on a bit more debt, with more and more time between them and the Great Recession, they also found in their Chase Slate Credit Survey there was “a disconnect between awareness of the need for credit and an understanding of how it works. According to the survey, 90 percent of Americans say they believe it’s important to have access to credit, yet nearly 40 percent don’t know their current credit score. More than half don’t know that paying bills on time is the factor that has the highest impact on their credit score.”

Of those who prefer cash or checks, the Post says the cash-spenders report “they are less tempted to overspend, according to the survey. Others favor checks because they provide them with a paper trail.”

But even with paper trails, as Chase reports about their findings, “even with stronger spending and better understanding about credit scores, though, Americans need to be careful with financial management, or the next recession will cause the same amount of pain as the most recent one.”

You can help all your customers manage their finances by offering as many different payment options as possible, whether they want to pay by online check, or use debit or credit cards. AVPS can help keep you current, and secure, with payment methods as they change, including getting ready for the coming EMV standards in October.

Customers liked their preferred payment methods, because each was familiar, and seemed like the most secure option. AVPS can partner with you in letting hem know that your business is one of the preferred places they can make those purchases.

 

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