Fintech Company Affirm Shares Survey Results Revealing 58% of Consumers Would Rather Use BNPL than Credit Cards

The team at Fintech company Affirm (NASDAQ: AFRM) notes that two years of living with a global pandemic have “reshaped expectations for consumers and retailers in 2022.”

Affirm writes in a blog post that shoppers plan to “travel and buy new clothes, and many retailers will continue practices they started during the pandemic—like offering flexible options for payments and returns.”

Shoppers want “more of what they’ve missed”

Results of the Affirm Consumer Spend Report reveal that shoppers are “eager to spend more on things that they didn’t buy as frequently in 2021.”

As noted in the update, shoppers “top 3 priorities” are as follows:

  • New wardrobe/clothing – 19%
  • Experiences – 18%
  • Travel – 16%

The online survey was conducted by OnePoll for Affirm in November 2021, “with a panel of 2,000 U.S. adults.”

Participants were also “asked about their interest in buy now, pay later (BNPL) options, which became more popular during the pandemic.” Over half of the respondents (56%) said they’re “interested in using a BNPL service like Affirm during 2022.”

Many consumers also expressed “strong preferences” for pay-over-time options:

  • 58% would rather use BNPL than a credit card
  • 49% will only buy from retailers that offer a BNPL option

Silvija Martincevic, Affirm’s Chief Commercial Officer, stated:

“Our latest Consumer Spend Report shows nearly half of consumers will only complete a purchase if a merchant offers a pay-over-time option at checkout. This shows how important it is for retailers to offer customers payment flexibility that will not only increase conversion, but will also help to bring those customers back after holiday shopping is over.”

Merchants “stick to best practices from the pandemic”

In fact, most businesses that added flexible payment options during the pandemic “plan to continue them into the future.” According to Affirm’s Merchant Insights Report, here are the main “pandemic-related practices” that small and midsize businesses plan to keep:

  • Flexible purchase options (54%)
  • Online sales / e-commerce (53%)
  • Digital payments (51%)
  • Flexible return options (47%)

As noted in the update, many merchants today “understand that shoppers like having more choice in how they pay for their purchases.”

The team at Affirm also mentioned that an “overwhelming majority of respondents in our survey (76%) agree that adding a flexible payment option like Affirm is a valuable way to drive growth as well as reach new customers.”

The report also “showed that more than 3 in 4 merchants (76%) agree that the pandemic has made it more important for their business to sell both online and in-store.”

Greg Fisher, Chief Marketing Officer at Affirm, remarked:

“Offering consumers the flexibility to pay over time in an integrated and seamless manner, both online and in-store, will be even more important this year.”

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