With digitalisation rapidly progressing and affecting every aspect of our lives – from the way we play to the way we pay – eCash levels the playing field for cash payers.
Much of society is becoming increasingly cashless, with the volume of cashless payments globally expected to rise by 80% between now and 2025. But it’s vital to remember that underbanked and unbanked communities don’t have the luxury of bidding farewell to physical currency. Many people around the world simply don’t have access to a bank account or a debit or credit card.
By digitalising cash, we can offer marginalised, cash-reliant communities access to online payments and enable them to participate in the world of eCommerce and digital financial transactions. It also allows security seekers to pay in cash and avoid having to provide personal financial data online.
In fact, according to our latest Lost in Transaction research study, which examines changing payment habits and preferences, 52% of consumers globally reported that they don’t feel comfortable sharing their financial details online. And 68% said they prefer using payment methods that don’t require them to share their financial details when paying.
Digitalising cash for online transactions
eCash, which enables cash to be used for online transactions, provides access to the digital world to cash payers and security seekers. Popular examples include the prepaid solution paysafecard as well as the post-paid barcode solution Paysafecash.
Paysafecard comes as a voucher with a 16-digit code that can be purchased in various denominations at petrol stations, supermarkets and convenience stores. The balance can then be redeemed by entering the code at the online checkout. This solution is particularly popular in the world of online entertainment and includes a spending control aspect that appeals to consumers as they can only spend the amount they have previously purchased with cash.
Paysafecash payments are made by generating a barcode during the online checkout, which can then be scanned and paid for in person at a nearby payment point. This solution has become increasingly popular for online transactions such as rent and bill payments, loan repayments, cash deposits into wallet-based financial services as well as a cash-in/cash-out solution for banking.
Paying for essential services in cash
When it comes to rent, utilities, loans and countless other essential services, cash is still the most available and most immediate payment method for unbanked and underbanked communities.
While many are revelling in how online payment platforms have simplified the process, this same proposition presents a huge hurdle for typically low-income groups who must find a way to pay for these services using cash funds without the luxury of a simple bank transfer or credit card.
eCash can facilitate this process, boosting financial inclusion and reducing missed payments. It allows cash-reliant communities to enjoy all the benefits of paying for services online without having to become banked. They can simply select “cash” as a payment option on the checkout page, generate a barcode and settle the amount in cash at a nearby payment point.
Bridging the gap between cash and banking
There are a number or reasons why people remain unbanked or underbanked and the high cost of traditional banking has certainly played a major role. While digital banks pose an attractive solution in terms of being less cost-intensive, they are still out of reach for anyone who relies heavily on cash.
Implementing eCash helps bridge that gap. It makes digital banking more accessible for cash-reliant consumers, providing them with an easy solution to cash-fund their accounts. Similar to choosing cash as a payment method during checkout, in this case, a barcode for a cash deposit can be generated in the digital bank’s mobile app. The barcode is then scanned at a payment point, the consumer pays the balance in cash and the amount gets credited to their digital bank account.
This also works for other financial service providers that utilise eCash for cash-funding their accounts, providing users access to any number of app-based budgeting and money management tools, setting up savings pots, or transferring money easily to friends right from their phone.
Beyond digital banking, eCash can also enable greater access to cash services in partnership with traditional banks. With bank branches closing and the availability of cashpoints decreasing, eCash payment points at participating retail locations can also be used to withdraw money. To do so, users would follow the steps above, generating a barcode in the banking app for the desired amount.
Paying with cash online
Taking it a step further, eCash doesn’t need to be limited to merchants and service providers who have integrated it as a payment solution. In combination with digital wallets like Skrill and NETELLER, eCash can open the door to online shopping in general.
Users can simply choose paysafecard or Paysafecash to deposit money into either of these digital wallets. This, in turn, allows consumers to use their cash funds with merchants that have integrated Skrill or NETELLER. They can also use prepaid credit cards available through these digital wallets to make payments literally anywhere.
Making progress inclusive
While there is no stopping digitalisation, it doesn’t have to go hand in hand with financial exclusion or remove cash from the payment mix. eCash is a powerful tool to mitigate the challenges of an increasingly cashless world, providing those who continue to rely on cash the ability to pay online for anything from online shopping to essential services.