PayPal – Digital Payments to Overtake Cheques

According to PayPal, the humble cheque is quickly becoming obsolete, as businesses and consumers embrace digital payment options.

According to PayPal, the humble cheque, along with other ‘traditional’ payment methods are set to be replaced by digital payments. The company reports that the Australian payments landscape has significantly evolved over the past decade, with the number of monthly cheque payments declining by over 61% to 27.6 million from the beginning of the millennium to 2010*. Whereas, PayPal has seen an increase of over 25% in its online transactions sent year-on-year.

Power Retail - Cheque Image

The humble cheque to go the way of the dodo - as consumers move to digital payments (Image Source: Pixomar,

Frerk-Malte Feller, Managing Director, PayPal Australia believes that the ease and security of digital payments has led to the shift in the way Australians now use physical and virtual currency.

“The benefits offered to consumers and businesses by digital payment transactions can no longer be matched by traditional payment methods, like the cheque.

“Consumers and businesses are looking for payment solutions that address their needs – be it online, through social networks or web-enabled mobile devices. Small businesses in particular require payment solutions which free up cash-flow. Transactions for our 35,000 registered businesses have grown 19% year-on-year and we’ve experienced tremendous growth in mobile payments over the last year,” stated Feller.

This shift in payment use and preference is echoed in a recent move by the RBA who announced in July 2010, that they would conduct a review of how payment instruments are currently being utilised in Australia; particularly examining trends offshore with the aim of identifying gaps that could be filled by innovation.

“It is important that we continue to encourage and foster innovation in the Australian payments landscape. From online and mobile shopping transactions to person-to-person payments and even digital goods purchases, the e-commerce market grows from strength-to-strength. We need to adapt, evolve and continue to develop secure and innovative payment solutions to ensure the needs of Australians are fulfilled.”

*Australian Payments Clearing Association, Cheque Payment Transactions (Monthly volume and value). Data collected over a one month period during the year.

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